From 'Hamlet' this 'poem' recited to young Laertes by Gertrude, Queen of Denmark, is P-i-R's latest selection. A descriptive and poetic triumph, complete with a seasonal joke, from the razor-sharp mind of the great playwright whom P-i-R has humbly dubbed the 'Quill of Avon'.
There is a willow grows askant the brook,
That shows his hoar leaves in the glassy stream;
Therewith fantastic garlands did she make
Of crowflowers, nettles, daisies, and long purples,
That liberal shepherds give a grosser name,
But our cold maids do dead men's fingers call them.
There on the pendent boughs her crownet weeds
Clambering to hang, an envious sliver broke,
When down her weedy trophies and herself
Fell in the weeping brook. Her clothes spread wide,
And mermaidlike awhile they bore her up,
Which time she chanted snatches of old lauds,
As one incapable of her own distress,
Or like a creature native and endued
Unto that element. But long it could not be
Till that her garments, heavy with their drink,
Pulled the poor wretch from her melodious lay
To muddy death.
(to 'get' Shakespeare's joke you need to know that 'long purples' are 'early purple orchids' and that they have testicle-resembling tubers)