Death Poems - Poems For Death - Death The Leveller

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Death The Leveller - Poem by James Shirley

The glories of our blood and state
Are shadows, not substantial things;
There is no armour against Fate;
Death lays his icy hand on kings:
Sceptre and Crown
Must tumble down,
And in the dust be equal made
With the poor crookèd scythe and spade.

Some men with swords may reap the field,
And plant fresh laurels where they kill:
But their strong nerves at last must yield;
They tame but one another still:
Early or late
They stoop to fate,
And must give up their murmuring breath
When they, pale captives, creep to death.

The garlands wither on your brow,
Then boast no more your mighty deeds!
Upon Death's purple altar now
See where the victor-victim bleeds.
Your heads must come
To the cold tomb:
Only the actions of the just
Smell sweet and blossom in their dust.


Comments about Death The Leveller by James Shirley

  • Rookie - 0 Points Tom Garvin (10/22/2017 5:19:00 AM)

    This and Longfellow's psalm of life are excellent guides (Report) Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Rookie - 0 Points Jacques Halsey (4/16/2016 4:49:00 PM)

    This poem was said to have terrified O.Cromwell! (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Dead Man Taiking (12/14/2012 9:33:00 AM)

    all things faint to dust (Report) Reply

Read all 4 comments »

Poems About Death

  1. 1. Let Me Die A Youngman's Death , Roger McGough
  2. 2. And Death Shall Have No Dominion , Dylan Thomas
  3. 3. Death Be Not Proud , John Donne
  4. 4. Death Is Nothing At All , Henry Scott Holland
  5. 5. Because I Could Not Stop For Death , Emily Dickinson
  6. 6. A Refusal To Mourn The Death, By Fire, O.. , Dylan Thomas
  7. 7. Nothing But Death , Pablo Neruda
  8. 8. A Dream Of Death , William Butler Yeats
  9. 9. A Poet's Death Is His Life Iv , Khalil Gibran
  10. 10. Father Death Blues , Allen Ginsberg
  11. 11. An Irish Airman Forsees His Death , William Butler Yeats
  12. 12. The Death Of The Ball Turret Gunner , Randall Jarrell
  13. 13. Death Wants More Death , Charles Bukowski
  14. 14. A City's Death By Fire , Derek Walcott
  15. 15. After Death , Sara Teasdale
  16. 16. A Death Blow Is A Life Blow To Some , Emily Dickinson
  17. 17. Death , Rainer Maria Rilke
  18. 18. First Death In Nova Scotia , Elizabeth Bishop
  19. 19. A Funeral Poem On The Death Of C. E. An .. , Phillis Wheatley
  20. 20. Death Xxvii , Khalil Gibran
  21. 21. On The Death Of A Young Lady Of Five Yea.. , Phillis Wheatley
  22. 22. The Beauty Of Death Xiv , Khalil Gibran
  23. 23. The Death Of Joy Gardner , Benjamin Zephaniah
  24. 24. Death Leaves Us Homesick, Who Behind , Emily Dickinson
  25. 25. Go Down, Death , James Weldon Johnson
  26. 26. A Ballad Of Death , Algernon Charles Swinburne
  27. 27. For The Anniversary Of My Death , William Stanley Merwin
  28. 28. A Thought For A Lonely Death-Bed , Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  29. 29. On The Death Of That Most Excellent Lady, , Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz
  30. 30. I Have A Rendezvous With Death , Alan Seeger
  31. 31. Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud , John Donne
  32. 32. On The Death Of Anne Brontë , Charlotte Brontë
  33. 33. Death Fugue , Paul Celan
  34. 34. Death &Amp; Fame , Allen Ginsberg
  35. 35. The Death Of The Hired Man , Robert Frost
  36. 36. Gacela Of The Dark Death , Federico García Lorca
  37. 37. Love &Amp; Fame &Amp; Death , Charles Bukowski
  38. 38. On Death , Anne Killigrew
  39. 39. On Hearing Of A Death , Rainer Maria Rilke
  40. 40. Death , William Butler Yeats
  41. 41. If Death Is Kind , Sara Teasdale
  42. 42. Death , Heinrich Heine
  43. 43. As At Thy Portals Also Death , Walt Whitman
  44. 44. An Elegy On The Death Of A Mad Dog , Oliver Goldsmith
  45. 45. Absence Disembodies—so Does Death , Emily Dickinson
  46. 46. All But Death, Can Be Adjusted , Emily Dickinson
  47. 47. An Elegy On The Death Of Kenneth Patchen , Lawrence Ferlinghetti
  48. 48. The Death Of The Flowers , William Cullen Bryant
  49. 49. Fugue Of Death , Paul Celan
  50. 50. Ode On The Death Of A Favourite Cat Drow.. , Thomas Gray
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