Magazine November 3, 2008, Issue

Henry Howard

(Callaghan O'Hare/Reuters)

He raised hell and broke windows, and even worse — 

The worst sort of proud aristocrat.

If so, so what? He wrote the first blank verse

And some of our first sonnets. And if that

Were not enough to put us in his debt

Deeply and forever, he gave us more.

He saw to it that we should not forget

His staunch young squire, Thomas Clere, who bore 

The miseries of battle with his lord

In Scotland and in France, where to be brave

Was to risk everything — and his reward?

An elegy to justify his grave,

Praise for his loyalty these five hundred years,

And, rarest of all tributes, strangers’ tears.


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