To see my fate, that when I dip my pen
In distill’d roses, and do strive to drain
Out of mine ink all gall; that when I weigh
Each syllable I write or speak, because
Mine enemies with sharp and searching eyes
Look through and through me, carving my poor labours
Like an anotomy. Oh heavens, to see
That when my lines are measur’d out as straight
As even parallels, ‘tis strange that still,
Still some imagine they are drawn awry.
The error is not mine, but in their eye
That cannot take proportions.
Of portents in nature and peril in man.
I have swum — I have been
'Twixt the whale's black flukes and the white shark's fin;
The enemy's desert have wandered in
And there have turned, have turned and scanned,
Following me how noiselessly,
Envy and Slander, lepers hand in hand.
--from In a Bye-Canal by Herman Melville
Cannot endure reproof,
Make not thyself a page
To that strumpet, the stage,
But sing high and aloof,
Safe from the wolf's black jaw and the dull ass's hoof.
--from An Ode to Himself by Ben Jonson
That same Crispanus is the silliest dor, and Fannius the slightest cobweb-lawnpiece of a poet. Oh God!
Why should I care what every dor doth buzz
In credulous ears; it is a crown to me,
That the best judgements can report me wrong’d.
I am one of them that can report it.
I think but what they are, and am not mov’d.
The one a light voluptuous reveller,
The other, a strange arrogating puff,
Both impudent, and arrogant enough.
S’lid, do not CRITICUS REVEL l in these lines, ha, Ningle, ha? (Paraphrase of lines from Jonson’s Cynthia’s Revels)