Fragment Of An Epistle To Thomas Moore

George Gordon Lord Byron 1788 (London) – 1824 (Missolonghi, Aetolia)

'What say I?'--not a syllable further in prose;
I'm your man 'of all measures,' dear Tom,--so here goes!
Here goes, for a swim on the stream of old Time,
On those buoyant supporters, the blad­ders of rhyme.
If our weight breaks them down, and we sink in the flood,
We are smother'd, at least, in respectable mud,
Where the Divers of Bathos lie drown'd in a heap,
And Southey's last Pæan has pillow'd his sleep;
That Felo de se,' who, half drunk with his malmsey,
Walk'd out of his depth and was lost in a calm sea,
Singing 'Glory to God' in a spick and span stanza,
The like (since Tom Sternhold was choked) never man saw.

The papers have told you, no doubt, of the fusses,
The fetes, and the gapings to get at these Russes,--
Of his Majesty's suite, up from coach­man to Hetman,
And what dignity decks the flat face of the great man.
I saw him, last week, at two balls and a party,--
For a prince, his demeanour was rather too hearty.
You know we are used to quite different graces,

The Czar's look, I own, was much brighter and brisker,
But then he is sadly deficient in whisker;
And wore but a starless blue coat, and in kersey--
Mere breeches whisk'd round, in a waltz with the Jersey,
Who lovely as ever, seem'd just as delighted
With Majesty's presence as those she invited.

June 1814.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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George Gordon Lord Byron

George Gordon Byron, 6th Baron Byron, known simply as Lord Byron, was an English poet, peer and politician who became a revolutionary in the Greek War of Independence, and is considered one of the leading figures of the Romantic movement. He is regarded as one of the greatest English poets and remains widely read and influential. Among his best-known works are the lengthy narrative poems Don Juan and Childe Harold's Pilgrimage; many of his shorter lyrics in Hebrew Melodies also became popular. He travelled extensively across Europe, especially in Italy, where he lived for seven years in the cities of Venice, Ravenna, and Pisa. During his stay in Italy he frequently visited his friend and fellow poet Percy Bysshe Shelley. Later in life Byron joined the Greek War of Independence fighting the Ottoman Empire and died of disease leading a campaign during that war, for which Greeks revere him as a national hero. He died in 1824 at the age of 36 from a fever contracted after the First and Second Siege of Missolonghi. His only legitimate child, Ada Lovelace, is regarded as a foundational figure in the field of computer programming based on her notes for Charles Babbage's Analytical Engine. Byron's illegitimate children include Allegra Byron, who died in childhood, and possibly Elizabeth Medora Leigh.  more…

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"Fragment Of An Epistle To Thomas Moore" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 13 Aug. 2020. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/15097/fragment-of-an-epistle-to-thomas-moore>.

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