The Great War

from Retrogression and Other Poems: Electronic Edition

The Giants and the Elves

It is enough to make

Laughter, or tears, gush from the stone.

When, in an island where.

On meadow and copse, could break

Chaucer, that other April; where alone

Earth could conceive and bear

Shakespeare, where Milton reigned on awe-

some throne.

And Dryden governed from more mundane


All perfect masters of their perfect tools,

And royally skilled to take

From each its utmost yield of service fair,

I am put off with posturing fools

Who in such presences cackle all day of Blake.