Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, UPON SIR THOMAS MARTIN, by JOHN CLEVELAND

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UPON SIR THOMAS MARTIN, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Hang out a flag and gather pence - a piece
Last Line: May have a knight hanged, yet sir tom go free!
Subject(s): Politics & Government; Property; Possessions

Who subscribed a Warrant thus: 'We the
Knights and Gentlemen of the Committee,' &c.
when there was no Knight but himself.

HANG out a flag and gather pence -- A piece
Which Afric never bred nor swelling Greece
With stories' tympany, a beast so rare
No lecturer's wrought cap, nor Bartholomew Fair
Can match him; nature's whimsey, that outvies
Tradescant and his ark of novelties;
The Gog and Magog of prodigious sights,
With reverence to your eyes, Sir Thomas Knights.
But is this bigamy of titles due?
Are you Sir Thomas and Sir Martin too?
Issachar couchant 'twixt a brace of sirs,
Thou knighthood in a pair of panniers;
Thou, that look'st, wrapped up in thy warlike leather,
Like Valentine and Orson bound together;
Spurs' representative! thou, that art able
To be a voider to King Arthur's table;
Who, in this sacrilegious mass of all,
It seems has swallowed Windsor's Hospital;
Pair-royal-headed Cerberus's cousin.
Hercules' labours were a baker's dozen,
Had he but trumped on thee, whose forked neck
Might well have answered at the font for Smec.
But can a knighthood on a knighthood lie?
Metal on metal is ill armory;
And yet the known Godfrey of Bouillon's coat
Shines in exception to the herald's vote.
Great spirits move not by pedantic laws;
Their actions, though eccentric, state the cause,
And Priscian bleeds with honour. Caesar thus
Subscribed two consuls with one Julius.
Tom, never oaded squire, scarce yeoman-high,
Is Tom twice dipped, knight of a double dye!
Fond man, whose fate is in his name betrayed!
It is the setting sun doubles his shade.
But it's no matter, for amphibious he
May have a knight hanged, yet Sir Tom go free!

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