Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > England
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
England: Vols. I–IV.  1876–79.
 
Worcester
Miserrimus
William Wordsworth (1770–1850)
 
A Gravestone upon the Floor in the Cloisters of Worcester Cathedral

“MISERRIMUS!” and neither name nor date,
Prayer, text, or symbol, graven upon the stone;
Naught but that word assigned to the unknown,
That solitary word,—to separate
From all, and cast a cloud around the fate        5
Of him who lies beneath. Most wretched one,
Who chose his epitaph?—Himself alone
Could thus have dared the grave to agitate,
And claim among the dead this awful crown;
Nor doubt that he marked also for his own        10
Close to these cloistral steps a burial-place,
That every foot might fall with heavier tread,
Trampling upon his vileness. Stranger, pass
Softly!—To save the contrite, Jesus bled.
 
 
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