Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE BEAU AND THE BEDLAMITE, by JOHN BYROM

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THE BEAU AND THE BEDLAMITE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: A patient in bedlam that did pretty well
Last Line: They'll die of themselves, if you let them alone.
Subject(s): Men; Prisons & Prisoners; Convicts

A patient in Bedlam that did pretty well,
Was permitted sometimes to go out of his cell.
One day when they gave him that freedom, he spied
A beauish young spark with a sword by his side,
With a huge silver hilt, and a scabbard of steel,
That swung at due length from his hip to his heel.

When he saw him advance on the gallery ground,
The Bedlamite ran, and survey'd him all round;
While a waiter suppress'd the young Captain's alarm
With—"You need not to fear, Sir, he'll do you no harm."
At the last he broke out—Aye, a very fine show!
May I ask him one question? 'What's that?' said the Beau.

Pray, what is that long, dangling, cumbersome thing,
Which you seem to be tied to with riband and string?
'Why, that is my sword?'—And what is it to do?
'Kill my enemies, master, by running them thro.'
Kill your enemies! Kill a fool's head of your own!
They'll die of themselves, if you let them alone.

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