David Abbott


An accidental collaboration with Thomas Campion (1567 – 1620).

The cypress curtain of the night is spread
And over all a silent dew is cast

Call on the winter birds, blue-crowing in the canopies
Listen leaf, leafe listene –

The weaker cares by sleep are conquered
But I alone with hideous grief aghast

Beaver moon, sorcerous lay on your back
Twiggy sticks clack, a mischievous frame make

In spite of Morpheus' charms a watch do keep
Over mine eyes to banish careless sleep

A bellyful of this sweet drink
You smile across the ages I am completely lost

Yet oft my trembling eyes through faintness close
And then the map of Hell before me stands

Up the Yaffle from my dog's round runs
The whole scape round the piercing spire doth rotate

Which ghosts do see and I am one of those
Ordaines to pine in sorrow's endless bands

What are you thinking what am I
A pale band of fallow imaginings is all i have

Since from my wretched soul all hopes are reft
And now no cause of life to me is left

Feele the heft of weighty mudd
Feele the sap become a floode

Grief, sieze my soul for that will still endure
When my crazed body is consumed and gone

Time I bide and sickening slowly waite
The dog yips yammers impatient at the gate

Bear it to thy black den, there keep it sure
Where thou ten thousand souls dost tire upon

Circle back along the track
Reach back, my winter vespers make

Yet all do not afford such food to thee
All this poor one, the worser part of me

In the wood's dark seam a voice
Be stille; breathe; open your ears

November 11, 2022

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