Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, PASSIVE PARTICIPLE'S PETITION, by JOHN BYROM

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PASSIVE PARTICIPLE'S PETITION, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Urban, or sylvan, or whatever name
Last Line: Of preter tense, and participle too.
Subject(s): Language; Magazines; Writing & Writers; Words; Vocabulary

URBAN, or Sylvan, or whatever name
Delights thee best, thou foremost in the fame
Of Magazining chiefs! whose rival page
With monthly medley courts the curious age,
Hear a poor Passive Participle's case,
And, if thou canst, restore me to my place.

Till just of late good English has thought fit
To call me written, or to call me writ;
But what is writ or written by the vote
Of writers now, hereafter must be wrote;
And what is spoken too, hereafter spoke;
And measures, never to be broken, broke.

I never could be driven; but, in spite
Of Grammar, they have drove me from my right.
None could have risen to become my foes;
But what a world of enemies have rose!
Who have not gone, but they have went about,
And, torn as I have been, have tore me out.

Passive I am and would be; and implore
That such abuse may be henceforth forbore,
If not forborn; for by each spelling book
If not mistaken, they are all mistook;
And in plain English it had been as well
If what has fall'n upon me, had not fell.

Since this attack upon me has began,
Who knows what length in language may be ran?
For if it once be grew into a law,
You'll see such work as never has been saw;
Part of our speech, and sense, perhaps, beside,
Shakes when I'm shook, and dies when I am died.

Then let the Preter and Imperfect Tense
Of my own words to me remit the sense;
Or, since we two are oft enough agreed,
Let all the learned take some better heed,
And leave the vulgar to confound the due
Of Preter tense, and Participle too.

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