Thou fool — that thou shouldst plume thyself
On rich attire, on jewel-hoard,
On dross of thine ill-gotten pelf,
On carcanet and flashing ring,
On meats and wines that load thy board!
Ay, cup on cup past numbering
Thou drainest with the drunken! Fool,
Who hast not learnt in wisdom's school
That wealth is an accursed thing
Dislinked from goodness! Only when
These twain are wedded, happiness
True and abiding comes to bless
The fleeting life of dying men.
Fool! — yet not as in wrath I speak:
Not I on thee would vengeance wreak.
A quiet spirit dwells in me
That scorns to bruise such worms as thee.
Nay, but the inevitable Fate
Even now decrees thine after-state: —
When thou art dead, so shalt thou lie
Ever: thy very name shall die.
Thy sordid story not outlast
Thy burial; for no part thou hast
In Song-land's roses, whose perfume
Breathes life immortal, o'er the tomb
Triumphant. Unregarded all
Shalt thou stray lost in Hades' hall
Amidst the fameless dead forlorn,
A vile, ignoble thing of scorn!