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

Philip Bourke Marston 1850–87

No Death

I SAW in dreams a mighty multitude,—

Gather’d, they seem’d, from North, South, East, and West,

And in their looks such horror was exprest

As must forever words of mine elude.

As if transfix’d by grief, some silent stood,

While others wildly smote upon the breast,

And cried out fearfully, “No rest, no rest!”

Some fled, as if by shapes unseen pursued.

Some laugh’d insanely. Others, shrieking, said:

“To think but yesterday we might have died;

For then God had not thundered, ‘Death is dead!’”

They gash’d themselves till they with blood were red.

“Answer, O God; take back this curse!” they cried,

But “Death is dead,” was all the voice replied.