Sonnets on English Dramatic Poets (1590-1650): John Webster

A poem by Algernon Charles Swinburne

Thunder: the flesh quails, and the soul bows down.
Night: east, west, south, and northward, very night
Star upon struggling star strives into sight,
Star after shuddering star the deep storms drown.
The very throne of night, her very crown,
A man lays hand on, and usurps her right
Song from the highest of heaven’s imperious height
Shoots, as a fire to smite some towering town.
Rage, anguish, harrowing fear, heart-crazing crime,
Make monstrous all the murderous face of Time
Shown in the spheral orbit of a glass
Revolving. Earth cries out from all her graves.
Frail, on frail rafts, across wide-wallowing waves,
Shapes here and there of child and mother pass.

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