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A Land Dirge
by John Webster

English playwright and poet. He is best known for his two tragedies, The White Devil (1609-12) and The Duchess of Malfi (1612-13), and his tragicomedy The Devil's Law-Case (1617-21). He was a dramatist of great poetic power who is now considered second only to Shakespeare among the playwrights of his day. Another notable work is his poem on the death of Prince Henry, A Monumental Column (1613). He also wrote plays with other dramatists, including Dekker, Rowley, Ford, Fletcher and Marston.

A Land Dirge
by John Webster

Call for the robin-redbreast and the wren,
Since o'er shady groves they hover,
And with leaves and flowers do cover
The friendless bodies of unburied men.
Call unto his funeral dole
The ant, the field-mouse, and the mole
To rear him hillocks that shall keep him warm,
And (when gay tombs are robbed) sustain no harm;
But keep the wolf far thence, that's foe to men,
For with his nails he'll dig them up again.

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