Dirge

COME away, come away, death,
   And in sad cypres let me be laid;
Fly away, fly away, breath;
   I am slain by a fair cruel maid.
My shroud of white, stuck all with yew,
   O prepare it!
My part of death, no one so true
   Did share it.

Not a flower, not a flower sweet,
   On my black coffin let there be strown;
Not a friend, not a friend greet
   My poor corse, where my bones shall be thrown:
A thousand thousand sighs to save,
   Lay me, O, where
Sad true lover never find my grave
   To weep there!

by William Shakespeare

Comments (10)

Death. I wonder how many poems have been written on this topic- there are probably paintings in caves about burial from centuries and centuries ago. The great poets like Shakespeare certainly cut their teeth on this topic- -yet we are no closer to having said all there is to be said.
A reflection on the theme of death and absurdity of life. SYLVA-ONYEMA
Not a flower, not a flower sweet. Nicely written and well communicated. SYLVA-ONYEMA
what a deep pathos in his words...can only sympathize.....touching poem
The meaning of the word 'dirge' is a musical term which refers to a funeral song, a slow, mounrful musical composition. In this poem the lyrical self calls for death. In the second stanza the lyrical self addresses his friends and his lovers and prohibits them to feel sorry for him. He does not want flowers to be thrown to his coffin, nor he wants his lover to cry over his grave. shakespeare-etc.org
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