The Apparition

Original Text: 
John Donne, Poems, by J. D. With elegies on the authors death (M. F. for J. Marriot, 1633). MICF no. 556 ROBA. Facs. edn. Menston: Scolar Press, 1969. PR 2245 A2 1633A. STC 7045.
1When by thy scorn, O murd'ress, I am dead
2      And that thou think'st thee free
3From all solicitation from me,
4Then shall my ghost come to thy bed,
5And thee, feign'd vestal, in worse arms shall see;
7And he, whose thou art then, being tir'd before,
8Will, if thou stir, or pinch to wake him, think
9      Thou call'st for more,
10And in false sleep will from thee shrink;
11And then, poor aspen wretch, neglected thou
12Bath'd in a cold quicksilver sweat wilt lie
13      A verier ghost than I.
14What I will say, I will not tell thee now,
15Lest that preserve thee; and since my love is spent,
16I'had rather thou shouldst painfully repent,
17Than by my threat'nings rest still innocent.


6] It was a common belief that candles burned dim and blue in the presence of ghosts. Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
RPO poem Editors: 
N. J. Endicott
RPO Edition: 
3RP 1.171.