Culture

Poetry Corner

On this day in 1536 the Pope was declared void in England. This was as a result of King Henry VIII’s determination to marry Anne Boleyn even though as a catholic he was already married to Catherine of Aragon. Here is a poem reputed to have been written by Anne Boleyn whilst awaiting death in The Tower of London. The great irony was that Anne was already dead on this day having been executed on 19th May of the same year. Henry went on to marry a further four times.

Untitled as far as I could ascertain:

Anne Boleyn

Picture from Wikimedia Commons

O Death, O Death, rock me asleepe,
Bring me to quiet rest;
Let pass my weary guiltless ghost
Out of my careful breast.
Toll on, thou passing bell;

Ring out my doleful knell;
Thy sound my death abroad will tell,
For I must die,
There is no remedy.

My pains, my pains, who can express?
Alas, they are so strong!
My dolours will not suffer strength
My life for to prolong.
Toll on, thou passing bell;
Ring out my doleful knell;
Thy sound my death abroad will tell,
For I must die,
There is no remedy.

Alone, alone in prison strong
I wail my destiny:
Woe worth this cruel hap that I
Must taste this misery!
Toll on, thou passing bell;
Ring out my doleful knell;
Thy sound my death abroad will tell,
For I must die,
There is no remedy.

Farewell, farewell, my pleasures past!
Welcome, my present pain!
I feel my torment so increase
That life cannot remain.
Cease now, thou passing bell,
Ring out my doleful knoll,
For thou my death dost tell:
Lord, pity thou my soul!
Death doth draw nigh,
Sound dolefully:
For now I die,
I die, I die.

Written perhaps by Anne Boleyn

1 reply »

  1. The Pope being ‘declared void’ is such a very strange idea – a void Pope – a Pope who is a void. An interesting idea – someone could write a poem based on that.
    He doesn’t have the power he used to have, these days. And a good thing too!.

    Like

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