1638 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Shakerley Marmion

Francis Tuckyr, "To his loving Friend, Mr. Shakerley Marmion, the Authour" Marmion, Cupid and Psyche (1638) sig. A4v.



Friend, I have read thy Poem, full of wit,
A Master-piece, Ile set my seale to it:
Let Judges reade, and ignorance be gone:
'Tis not for vulgar thumbs to sweat upon
This learned worke: thy Muse flies in her place:
And eagle-like, lookes Phoebus in the face.
Let those voluminous Authours that affect
Fame rather great, than good, thy worth reject.
Jewels are small: how 'nlike art thou to those,
That tire out Rime, and Verse, till they trot Prose?
And ride the Mus's Pegasus, poore jade,
Till he be foundred; and make that their trade:
And to fill up the sufferings of the beast,
Foot it themselves three hundred miles at least.
These have no mercy on the Paper rheames,
But produce plaies, as schole-boys do write theams.
Thou keepst thy Muse in breath, and if men wage
Gold on her head, will better runne the stage:
And 'tis more praise, than hadst thou labour'd in't,
To brand the world with twenty such in print.