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-On burning a dull Poem

1729


An ass's hoof alone can hold
That poisonous juice, which kills by cold.
Methought, when I this poem read,
No vessel but an ass's head
Such frigid fustian could contain;
I mean, the head without the brain.
The cold conceits, the chilling thoughts,
Went down like stupifying draughts;
I found my head begin to swim,
A numbness crept through every limb.

In haste, with imprecations dire,
I threw the volume in the fire;
When, (who could think?) though cold as ice,
It burnt to ashes in a trice.
How could I more enhance its fame?
Though born in snow, it died in flame.


Jonathan Swift

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