I have been studying how I may compare
This world in which we live unto a prison:
And for because this prison’s populous,
Yet in it we are all alone,
I cannot do it; yet I’ll hammer it out.
My dogs I’ll seek, the comfort to my soul:
Their generousness, the peace they bring
to my still-breeding thoughts, that people
all my little world, seeking humour,
though humor never is contented.
The better dogs, as sent from things divine,
Are intermix’d with lesser dogs: Chihuahuas,
Bred to be eaten, and best, perhaps, for that.
Better kill domesticated beasts than wild ones —
As thoughts of things divine are intermix'd
With scruples and do set the word itself
Against the Word, as: ‘Thou Shalt Not Kill.’
O, really, Moses? So what do you think about
the State of Israel? Or the Taliban?
What should we do about them? Enemies
of mankind, or Saviors? And of whom?
Except their own sorry, lying asses.
And what is the difference between them?
How easy it is to set the word against itself —
I give you the Crusades, ‘celibacy’
In the Catholic Church, as thus:
‘Come, little ones;’ and then again,
‘It is as hard to come as for a camel
to thread the postern of a needle's eye.’
Thoughts tending to ambition, they do plot
Unlikely wonders; how our weak vanity
May tear a passage through the flinty ribs
Of this hard world, our ragged prison walls,
And, for they cannot, die in their own pride.
Thoughts tending to content flatter themselves
That they are not the first of fortune's slaves,
Nor shall not be the last; like silly beggars
Who sitting in the stocks refuge their shame,
That many have and others must sit there;
and in this thought they find a kind of ease,
Bearing their own misfortunes on the back
of such as have before endured the like.
And so they post some bullshit on Facebook,
Inflicting their delusions on the world.
Thus play we all in one person many people,
and none contented — none with a particle of brain.
Sometimes am I king; then treasons make me
wish myself a beggar, and so I am.
Then crushing penury persuades me I was better
when a king; Then am I king’d again:
and by and by think that I am unking’d by Snopes.com,
and straight am nothing. But whate’er I be,
Nor I nor any man that but man is
With nothing shall be pleased, till he be eased
With being nothing. Music do I hear?
Ha, ha! keep time: How sour our sweet suppósed
state is, with no proportion kept!
And time forgot! So is it in the music
of men's lives, when we had not an ear
to hear our true time broke by tyrants.
We wasted time, and now doth time waste us;
for now hath time made us his numbering clock:
Sustaining lies until the next election.
With greedy ears they thrust their nose into
Our eyes. Th’ election season, their precious watch,
like a dial’s point, is pointing still,
cleansing them, they think, from tears they never felt:
Imposed, impelled, but never felt. While we
Stand here, or crouch, clutching our computers,
dogs, and children. Better clutch our dogs
or children than computers. And what would we
rescue from our burning house? Our dogs?
Our children? Or computers? This music mads me!
Let it sound no more. For though it have
holp madmen to their wits, in me it seems
it will make wise men mad, yet blessing on his heart
that gives it me! in this all-hating world.
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