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Short poem

J. M. Synge (1871-1909)

On an Anniversary

After reading the dates in a book of Lyrics.

              1With Fifteen-ninety or Sixteen-sixteen
              2We end Cervantes, Marot, Nashe or Green:
              3The Sixteen-thirteen till two score and nine,
              4Is Crashaw's niche, that honey-lipped divine.
              5And so when all my little work is done
              6They'll say I came in Eighteen-seventy-one,
              7And died in Dublin .... What year will they write
              8For my poor passage to the stall of Night?


2] Cervantes, Marot, Nashe or Green: Synge's dates are seldom always spot-on. Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (1547-1616) is right, but not Clément Marot (1496-1544), Thomas Nashe (1567-1601), and Robert Greene (1560-1592), if these are the literary figures he intended.

4] Crashaw: Richard Crashaw (1613-1649), English poet.

Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: J. M. Synge, Poems and translations (Churchtown, Dundrum: Cuala Press, 1909). del S993 A15 1909 Fisher Rare Book Library.
First publication date: 1909
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 1999.
Recent editing: 2:2002/3/13

Composition date note: before 1900?
Form: couplets

Other poems by J. M. Synge