Collected Poems
And there were some, of course, and there be now,
Disordered and reduced amazedly
To resignation by the mystic seal
Of young finality the gods had laid
On everything that made him a young demon;
And one or two shot looks at him already
As he had been their executioner;
And once or twice he was, not knowing it,
Or knowing, being sorry for poor clay
And saying nothing. . . . Yet, for all his engines,
You ' ll meet a thousand of an afternoon
Who strut and sun themselves and see around ' em
A world made out of more that has a reason
Than his, I swear, that he sees here to-day;
Though he may scarcely give a Fool an exit
But we mark how he sees in everything
A law that, given we flout it once too often,
Brings fire and iron down on our naked heads.
To me it looks as if the power that made him,
For fear of giving all things to one creature,
Left out the first, faith, innocence, illusion,
Whatever ' tis that keeps us out o ' Bedlam,
And thereby, for his too consuming vision,
Empowered him out of nature; though to see him,
You ' d never guess what ' s going on inside him.
He ' ll break out some day like a keg of ale
With too much independent frenzy in it;
And all for cellaring what he knows won ' t keep,
And what he ' d best forget but that he can ' t.
You ' ll have it, and have more than I ' m foretelling;
And there ' ll be such a roaring at the Globe
As never stunned the bleeding gladiators.
He ' ll have to change the color of its hair
A bit, for now he calls it Cleopatra.
Black hair would never do for Cleopatra.