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Unformatted text preview: could swear that more than half a score Among us who see lightning see that ruin Is not the work of thunder. Since the world Was ordered, there was never a long pause For caution between doing and undoing. BURR Go on, sir; my attention is a trap Set for the catching of all compliments To Monticello, and all else abroad That has a name or an identity. HAMILTON I leave to you the names -- there are too many; Yet one there is to sift and hold apart, As now I see. There comes at last a glimmer That is not always clouded, or too late. But I was near and young, and had the reins To play with while he manned a team so raw That only God knows where the end had been Of all that riding without Washington. There was a nation in the man who passed us, If there was not a world. I may have
22 The Three Taverns A Book of Poems By Edwin Arlington Robinson driven Since then some restive horses, and alone, And through a splashing of abundant mud; But he who made the dust that sets you on To coughing, made the road. Now it seems dry, And in a measure safe. BURR Here's a new tune From Hamilton. Has your caution all at once, And over night, grown till it wrecks the cradle? I have forgotten what my father said When I was born, but there's a rustling of it Among my memories, and it makes a noise About as loud as all that I have held And fondled heretofore of your same caution. But that's affairs, not feelings. If our friends Guessed half we say of them, our enemies Would itch in our friends' jackets. Howsoever, The world is of a sudden on its head, And all are spilled -- unless you cling alone With Washington. Ask Adams about that. HAMILTON We'll not ask Adams about anything. We fish for lizards when we choose to ask For what we know already is not coming, And we must eat the answer. Where's the use Of asking when this man says everything, With all his tongues of silence? BURR I dare say. I dare say, but I won't. One of those tongues I'll borrow for the nonce. He'll never miss it. We mean his Western Majesty, King George. HAMILTON I mean the man who rode by on his horse. I'll beg of you the meed of your indulgence If I should say this planet may have done A deal of weary whirling when at last, If ever, Time shall aggregate again A majesty like his that has no name. BURR Then you concede his Majesty? That's good, And what of yours? Here are two majesties. Favor the Left a little, Hamilton, Or you'll be floundering in the ditch that waits For riders who forget where they are riding. If we and France, as you anticipate, Must eat each other, what Caesar, if not yourself, Do you see for the master of the feast? There may be a place waiting on your head For laurel thick as Nero's. You don't know.
23 The Three Taverns A Book of Poems By Edwin Arlington Robinson I have not crossed your glory, though I might If I saw thrones at auction. HAMILTON Yes, you might. If war is on the way, I shall be -- here; And I've no vision of your distant heels. BURR I see that I shall take an inference To bed...
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This note was uploaded on 10/31/2010 for the course ENGLISH EN203 taught by Professor Micheal during the Spring '03 term at UC Irvine.
- Spring '03
- The Bible