Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > An American Anthology, 1787–1900
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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  An American Anthology, 1787–1900.  1900.
 
1088. To Shakespeare
 
By Richard Edwin Day
 
 
THOU, who didst lay all other bosoms bare,
Impenetrable shade didst round thee throw;
And of the ready tears thou makest flow,
Monarch of tears, thou hast not any share.
Sad Petrarch, sadder Byron their despair        5
Unlocked, their dismal theatres of woe
Unclosed: thou showest Hamlet, Romeo,
And maddened Lear, with tempest on his hair.
Hadst thou no suffering men’s tears could suage?
No comedy of thine own life, shut in?        10
No lurid tragedy—perhaps of sin—
That walked with muffled steps its curtained stage?
Confession troubles ne’er thy godlike look;
Thou art, thyself, thy one unopened book.
 

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