Books [Tramp Poet]
The Great Queen kissed him at the Court and killed him in
The captains and the admirals, some strangled 'neath the foam,
And some were buried with acclaim and elegy at home.
Above their final dwelling place a visored figure lies
With pious Latin epitaph and hands crossed christianwise.
The fleet ships, having known their times, rotted in bight and bay,
Or at the bottom of the sea — and naught remains today
Of the first great youth of England and the haughty prime of
But the broken bolt, a blunderbuss, and a grinning skull or twain.
“I don't know just when the transition occured, but suddenly, I discovered I'd had my fill of boy-adventure stuff; instead of Kipling and Stevenson, I was reading Byron, Shelley and Keats. Somewhere, I got hold of a copy of Byron's “Hours of Idleness”— and it made a changed man of me. I remember the frontispiece to the book was a portrait of the young Byron, with flowing tie and open shirt. Much as a devout Catholic wears a gold cross around his neck to signify his belief, so with like devoutness, I took to wearing my shirt open at the neck and a loose flowing black tie. And I ruffled my hair in the Byronic style. My writing began to take on a more delicate lyrical tinge, such as: YOUNG MAN'S SONG
O Time has lightning in its wing
And pleasure is a fragile thing
That breaks in cluthing; beauty's face
Carries a skull behind its grace:
Then where's a better reason why
I should love beauty ere it die,
Lift brighter torches in the night
And seize on joy in time's despite?