Contrarian verses

“Not to admire, is all the art I know
To make men happy, or to keep them so.”
Thus Pope quotes Horace; but had none admired,
Would Pope have sung, or Horace been inspired?
(These rhymes are clipped from Byron, every line:
For God’s sake, reader! take them not for mine.)


I’ll never see nor ever hear
A tree as lovely as Shakespeare,
Nor think that God shall ever make
A tree to rival William Blake.
Not since the tree that wrought Eve’s curse
Have leaves of green matched leaves of verse.


If cut worm lives,
It ne’er forgives.


What was once proved
Is now only imagin’d.


Two Principles in human nature reign;
Reason, to urge, and Self-love, to restrain.


What Browning meant I think I see
And understand — yet men there be
Whose grasp exceeds their wildest reach,
Who practice what they dare not preach,
Whose flesh is willing, spite of pride,
And for these, too, I think, Christ died.

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