Archivi del giorno: ottobre 31, 2012

Macbeth, Act IV, Scene I [Round about the cauldron go] by William Shakespeare

Macbeth, Act IV, Scene I [Round about the cauldron go]

by William Shakespeare


The three witches, casting a spell

Round about the cauldron go; 
In the poison’d entrails throw. 
Toad, that under cold stone 
Days and nights hast thirty one
Swelter’d venom sleeping got, 
Boil thou first i’ the charmed pot. 

        Double, double toil and trouble;
        Fire burn and cauldron bubble. 

Fillet of a fenny snake, 
In the cauldron boil and bake; 
Eye of newt, and toe of frog, 
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and howlet’s wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.
         Double, double toil and trouble; 
         Fire burn and cauldron bubble. 

Scale of dragon, tooth of wolf,
Witches’ mummy, maw and gulf
Of the ravin’d salt-sea shark,
Root of hemlock digg’d i’ the dark,
Liver of blaspheming Jew,
Gall of goat, and slips of yew
Sliver’d in the moon’s eclipse,
Nose of Turk, and Tartar’s lips,
Finger of birth-strangled babe
Ditch-deliver’d by a drab,
Make the gruel thick and slab:
Add thereto a tiger’s chaudron,
For the ingredients of our cauldron.

          Double, double toil and trouble;
          Fire burn and cauldron bubble. 

Today’s poem is in the public domain. 


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Lines Inscribed Upon a Cup Formed from a Skull by George Gordon Byron

Start not-nor deem my spirit fled:
In me behold the only skull
From which, unlike a living head,
Whatever flows is never dull.

I lived, I loved, I quaff’d, like thee:
I died: let earth my bones resign;
Fill up-thou canst not injure me;
The worm hath fouler lips than thine.

Better to hold the sparkling grape,
Than nurse the earth-worm’s slimy brood;
And circle in the goblet’s shape
The drink of Gods, than reptiles’ food.

Where once my wit, perchance, hath shone,
In aid of others’ let me shine;
And when, alas! our brains are gone,
What nobler substitute than wine?

Quaff while thou canst-another race,
When thou and thine like me are sped,
May rescue thee from earth’s embrace,
And rhyme and revel with the dead.

Why not? since through life’s little day
Our heads such sad effects produce;
Redeem’d from worms and wasting clay,
This chance is theirs, to be of use.

About this poem:

According to Thomas Medwin, Byron’s gardener dug up a human skull which was then mounted as a drinking cup, per the Lord’s request. Byron: “it returned with a very high polish, and of a mottled colour like tortoiseshell.”

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