III

Anti-Poetry

 

Eighteen

I will not compare thee to a winter's night.

I am as loathsome and as desolate:

Mild doldrums spoil the oldest roots of June,

And winter's hoard lies long beneath the dune;

Always too cold the worldly vision dims,

And seldom seen our rusty honour's gleams;

And every grey with grey always is blued,

By fate or human's concrete block subdued;

But thy ephem'ral winter is too short,

Will melt in hands that crave what is not bought;

Will be consumed by fashion's quick'ning shrines,

Thou'll not be buried under mortal lines:

So soon as one short breath, or glimpse too brief,

So soon dies this, and so take life from death.

 

contra Shakespeare's sonnet