Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, ON DOCTOR DONNE, by RICHARD CORBET

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

ON DOCTOR DONNE, by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: Hee that would write an epitaph for thee
Last Line: He must be dead first, let'it alone for mee.
Alternate Author Name(s): Corbett, Richard
Subject(s): Donne, John (1572-1631); Poetry & Poets

Hee that would write an Epitaph for thee,
And do it well, must first beginne to be
Such as thou wert; for, none can truly know
Thy worth, thy life, but he that hath liv'd so;
He must have wit to spare and to hurle downe:
Enough, to keepe the gallants of the towne.
He must have learning plenty; both the Lawes,
Civill, and Common, to judge any cause;
Divinity great store, above the rest;
Not of the last Edition, but the best.
Hee must have language, travaile, all the Arts;
Judgement to use; or else he wants thy parts.
He must have friends the highest, able to do;
Such as Mecoenas, and Augustus too.
He must have such a sicknesse, such a death;
Or else his vaine descriptions come beneath;
Who then shall write an Epitaph for thee,
He must be dead first, let'it alone for mee.

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