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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: July ::
Poem from Much Ado About Nothing
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1441  Friday, 28 July 2000.

From:           Peter Webster <
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Date:           Thursday, 27 Jul 2000 09:52:03 EDT
Subject:        Poem from Much Ado About Nothing

Here is something a bit awry, but charming: a piecemeal poem assembled
from MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. I came across it again in a dog-eared
uncorrected advance proof of The Best American Poetry, 1991.

BENEDICK'S COMPLAINTS
by Gary Mitchner

Burn my study for it holds no friends.
Who says one fathers the self for others?
Remember, Lady Disdain cannot die for you.
Courteous turncoats love women's happiness.
After sober custom who scratches the tongue?
Sighing away Sundays, put on a suspicious cap.
Savage bulls too often fall from faith.
Heavenly tuition's paid for hard lessons.
Twisting fine stories, the present practice.
Hearing of reason we use discontent as a muzzle.
Apes in hell likewise betrothed to unquiet.
The cook's mind filled with earth like supper.
Valiant dust no longer dances out answers.
Impossible slanderers eat the fool's partridge.
Hearts with tongues can always sell bullocks.
Silent heralds steal mirth and matter from all.
Dancing stars come on time's last crutches.
Argument and scorn soil this fantastic banquet.
Sheep from men's bodies counterfeit passion.
The hit fox devours tender blood like oysters.
There's fear and trembling in Messina.
Trust expectations, sport of the sadly born.
Mend distractions with paper brains, paper bullets.
Pain's message runs like fish after bait.
Consuming wrong becomes Cupid's trap.
The taming hand starts fire in the ear.
Sad money like a sighing ache is fancy's disguise.
Deaf hobbyhorses at cold midnight face upward.
Hanging dogs bark out man's shame and reproach.
Behind the horse one cannot find wantonness.
Every luxurious bed holds unknown loins.
Gone through here, Count Conflict condemns.
Recorded as an ass, he received no burial.
Caring cats, we refuse to see the doctor ape.
Hard words will not grow into a rhyming plant.
Sir God, please stop dealing in bruised hope.

Peter Webster
 

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