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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

Ebenezer Elliott 1781–1849

A Poet’s Epitaph

STOP, mortal! Here thy brother lies—

The poet of the poor.

His books were rivers, woods, and skies,

The meadow and the moor;

His teachers were the torn heart’s wail,

The tyrant and the slave,

The street, the factory, the jail,

The palace—and the grave.

Sin met thy brother everywhere!

And is thy brother blam’d?

From passion, danger, doubt, and care,

He no exemption claim’d

The meanest thing, earth’s feeblest worm,

He fear’d to scorn or hate;

But, honoring in a peasant’s form

The equal of the great,

He bless’d the steward, whose wealth makes

The poor man’s little, more;

Yet loath’d the haughty wretch that takes

From plunder’d labor’s store.

A hand to do, a head to plan,

A heart to feel and dare—

Tell man’s worst foes, here lies the man

Who drew them as they are.