Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, ON BURNING A DULL POEM; WRITTEN IN 1729, by JONATHAN SWIFT



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ON BURNING A DULL POEM; WRITTEN IN 1729, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: An ass's hoof alone can hold
Last Line: Though born in snow, it died in flame.
Subject(s): Hate


An ass's hoof alone can hold
That poisonous juice which kills by cold.
Methought, when I this poem read,
No vessel but an ass's head,
Such frigid fustian could contain;
I mean the head without the brain.
The cold conceits, the chilling thoughts,
Went down like stupefying draughts:
I found my head began to swim,
A numbness crept through every limb:
In haste, with imprecations dire,
I threw the volume in the fire:
When, who could think, though cold as ice,
It burnt to ashes in a trice.
How could I more enhance its fame?
Though born in snow, it died in flame.





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