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Poem by Thomas Chatterton

Songe to Aella, Lorde of the Castel of Brystowe Ynne Daies of Yore


WELL thanne, goode Johne, sythe ytt must needes be soe,
Thatt thou & I a bowtynge matche must have,
Lette ytt ne breakynge of oulde friendshyppe bee,
Thys ys the onelie all-a-boone I crave.
Rememberr Stowe, the Bryghtstowe Carmalyte,
Who whanne Johne Clarkynge, one of myckle lore,
Dydd throwe hys gauntlette-penne, wyth hym to fyghte,
Hee showd smalle wytte, and showd hys weaknesse more.
Thys ys mie formance, whyche I nowe have wrytte,
The best performance of mie lyttel wytte.


OH thou, orr what remaynes of thee,
Ælla, the darlynge of futurity,
Lett thys mie songe bolde as thie courage be,
As everlastynge to posteritye.
Whanne Dacya's sonnes, whose hayres of bloude-redde hue
Lyche kynge-cuppes brastynge wythe the morning due,
Arraung'd ynne dreare arraie,
Upponne the lethale daie,
Spredde farre and wyde onne Watchets shore;
Than dyddst thou furiouse stande,
And bie thie valyante hande
Beesprengedd all the mees wythe gore.
Drawne bie thyne anlace felle,
Downe to the depthe of helle
Thousandes of Dacyanns went;
Brystowannes, menne of myghte,
Ydar'd the bloudie fyghte,
And actedd deeds full quent.
Oh thou, whereer (thie bones att reste)
Thye Spryte to haunte delyghteth beste,
Whetherr upponne the bloude-embrewedd pleyne,
Orr whare thou kennst fromm farre
The dysmall crye of warre,
Orr seest somme mountayne made of corse of sleyne;
Orr seest the hatchedd stede,
Ypraunceynge o'er the mede,
And neighe to be amenged the poynctedd speeres;
Orr ynne blacke armoure staulke arounde
Embattel'd Brystowe, once thie ground;
And glowe ardurous onn the Castle steeres;
Orr fierye round the mynsterr glare;
Lette Brystowe stylle be made thie care;
Guarde ytt fromme foemenne & consumynge fyre;
Lyche Avones streme ensyrke ytte rounde,
Ne lette a flame enharme the grounde,
Yylle ynne one flame all the whole worlde expyre. 

Thomas Chatterton

Thomas Chatterton's other poems:
  1. Chorus from Goddwyn
  2. Colin Instructed
  3. Epitaph on Robert Canynge
  4. The Churchwarden and The Apparition
  5. Narva and Mored

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