Verse > Anthologies > Andrew Macphail, ed. > The Book of Sorrow
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Andrew Macphail, comp.  The Book of Sorrow.  1916.
 
X. The Pity of It
Epitaph on Salathiel Pavy
By Ben Jonson (1572–1637)
 
WEEP with me, all you that read
  This little story;
And know, for whom a tear you shed,
  Death’s self is sorry.
It was a child that so did thrive        5
  In grace and feature,
As Heaven and Nature seemed to strive
  Which owned the creature.
Years he numbered scarce thirteen
  When fates turned cruel,        10
Yet three filled zodiacs had he been
  The stage’s jewel;
And did act, what now we moan,
  Old men so duly,
Ah, sooth, the Parcae thought him one—        15
  He played so truly.
So by error to his fate
  They all consented,
But viewing him since, alas, too late
  They have repented;        20
And have sought, to give new birth,
  In baths to steep him;
But being so much too good for earth,
  Heaven vows to keep him.
 
 
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