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Mark Olival-Bartley studied applied linguistics at Hawaii Pacific University, attaining B.A. and M.A. degrees in TESOL, and poetry at the City College of New York. He is now anatomizing the prosody of E. A. Robinson’s sonnets for his dissertation at Amerika Institut of LMU Munich, where also he edits a poetry weekly. His poems and translations have appeared in journals on both sides of the Atlantic. He is the resident poet at EcoHealth, where his science-themed verse is regularly featured, and a senior copyeditor of Review of International American Studies.

20150303

Idea

XX

by Michael Drayton


An evil Spirit (your Beauty) haunts me still,
Wherewith, alas, I have been long possesst;
Which ceaseth not to attempt me to each ill,
Nor give me once, but one poor minute’s rest.
  In me it speaks, whether I sleep or wake:       
And when by means to drive it out I try,
With greater torments then it me doth take,
And tortures me in most extremity.
  Before my face, it lays down my despairs,
And hastes me on unto a sudden death:        
Now tempting me, to drown myself in tears;
And then in sighing to give up my breath.
  Thus am I still provoked to every evil,
  By this good-wicked Spirit, sweet Angel-Devil.

Note:  A recitation can be heard here.

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