James Shirley

(September 1596 – October 1666 / London, England)

From Ajax Dirge


The glories of our blood and state
Are shadows, not substantial things;
There is no armor against fate;
Death lays his icy hand on kings.
Scepter and crown
Must tumble down
And in the dust be equal made
With the poor crooked scythe and spade.

Some men with swords may reap the field
And plant fresh laurels where they kill,
But their strong nerves at last must yield;
They tame but one another still.
Early or late
They stoop to fate
And must give up their murmuring breath,
When they, pale captives, creep to death.

The garlands wither on your brow,
Then boast no more your mighty deeds;
Upon death’s purple altar now
See where the victor-victim bleeds.
Your heads must come
To the cold tomb;
Only the actions of the just
Smell sweet and blossom in their dust.

Submitted: Thursday, May 10, 2012

Form:


Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (From Ajax Dirge by James Shirley )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Trending Poets

Trending Poems

  1. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  3. A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe
  4. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
  5. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
  6. If, Rudyard Kipling
  7. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  8. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
  10. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou

Poem of the Day

poet Christopher Marlowe

It lies not in our power to love or hate,
For will in us is overruled by fate.
When two are stripped, long ere the course begin,
We wish that one should love, the other win;

...... Read complete »

   

Member Poem

New Poems

  1. Respecting Ideas, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  2. where you belong..., veeraiyah subbulakshmi
  3. Our Divine Differences, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  4. Sense Of Being Directionless, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  5. Desert, Nalini Jyotsana Chaturvedi
  6. Living on, The Princess is
  7. Gesture Of Tiredness, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  8. at home..., veeraiyah subbulakshmi
  9. This Soul's Interior Particles, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  10. Soul's Interior Particles, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
[Hata Bildir]