Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, IN THE DOCK, by WALTER JOHN DE LA MARE

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

IN THE DOCK, by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: Pallid, mis-shapen he stands. The world's grimed thumb
Last Line: When howls man's soul, it howls inaudibly.
Alternate Author Name(s): Ramal, Walter; De La Mare, Walter

Pallid, mis-shapen he stands. The World's grimed thumb,
Now hooked securely in his matted hair,
Has haled him struggling from his poisonous slum
And flung him, mute as fish, close-netted there.

His bloodless hands entalon that iron rail.
He gloats in beastlike trance. His settling eyes
From staring face to face rove on -- and quail.
Justice for carrion pants; and these the flies.

Voice after voice in smooth impartial drone
Erects horrific in his darkening brain
A timber framework, where agape, alone,
Bright life will kiss good-bye the cheek of Cain.

Sudden like wolf he cries; and sweats to see
When howls man's soul, it howls inaudibly.

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