Selected Poems (Oxford World's Classics) by John Wilmot

By John Wilmot

If I via miracle should be
This livelong minute real to thee
'Tis all that heav'n allows.'

The Earl of Rochester used to be England's first famous person poet, a byword for the theatricality, licentiousness, and scepticism of the recovery age. yet his scandalous popularity belies the diversity and class of his paintings: his love poems set new criteria not just of sexual explicitness but in addition of mental acuity and lyric grace, whereas his satires broke new flooring as a lot through the refinement in their ironies as within the brutality in their invective. A fascinatingly contradictory determine,
Rochester emerges extra truly than ever from this re-creation, the 1st collection of his paintings in smooth spelling to take account of contemporary innovative advances in textual scholarship. It contains basically poems now securely attributed to the poet, in texts established now not at the posthumous and unreliable
printed variants yet at the such a lot authoritative manuscripts which circulated in his lifetime.

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Sample text

You ought to be ashamed, I said, to look so antique. ) I can't help it, she said, pulling a long face, It's them pllls I took, to bring it off, she said. ) 160 The chemist SaId it would be all right, but I've never been the same.

Mer such knowledge, what forgiveness? Thmk now HIstory has many cunnmg passages, contnved corndors And ISsues, deceives WIth wlnspermg amblhons, GUldes us by vanities. Think now She gives when our attenhon is distracted And what she gIves, glVes with such supple confusions That the giVillg famishes the craving. Gives too late What's not believed In, or is still believed, In memory only, reconsIdered passion. Gives too soon Into weak hands, what's thought can be dispensed wIth Till the refusal propagates a fear.

Lights, hghts, She entertains Sir Ferdinand Klein. Who clipped the lion's wings And Hea'd his rump and pared his claws? Thought Burbank, meditating on Time's rUlllS, and the seven laws. 33 Sweeney Erect And the trees abollt me, Let them be dry and leafless, let the 1'Ocks Groan wIth contmual surges, and behmd me Make all a desolation Look, look, we1l6hesl Prunt me a cavernous waste shore Cast III the unstllled Cyclades, Pamt me the bold anfractuous rocks Faced by the snarled and yelpll1g seas. Dlsplay me Aeolus above ReVleWll1g the insurgent gales WhlCh tangle Al'ladne's harr And swell WIth haste the pel jured salls.

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