Ben Jonson

  E  P  I  G  R  A  M  S .  


What need hast thou of me, or of my muse,
     Whose actions so themselves do celebrate ?
Which should thy country's love to speak refuse,
     Her foes enough would fame thee in their hate.
Tofore, great men were glad of poets ; now,
     I, not the worst, am covetous of thee :
Yet dare not to my thought least hope allow
     Of adding to thy fame ; thine may to me,
When in my book men read but CECIL'S name,
     And what I write thereof find far, and free
From servile flattery, common poets' shame,
     As thou stand'st clear of the necessity.


Jonson, Ben.  The Works of Ben Jonson.
Boston: Phillips, Sampson, and Co., 1853. 788.

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