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Monologues for Men


Doubtful it stood,

As two spent swimmers that do cling together

And choke their art. The merciless Macdonwald

(Worthy to be a rebel, for to that

The multiplying villainies of nature

Do swarm upon him) from the Western Isles

Of kerns and gallowglasses is supplied,

And Fortune, on his damned quarrel smiling,

Show’d like a rebel’s whore. But all’s too weak;

For brave Macbeth (well he deserves that name),

Disdaining Fortune, with his brandish’d steel,

Which smok’d with bloody execution,

(Like Valor’s minion) carv’d out his passage

Till he fac’d the slave;

Which nev’r shook hands, nor bade farewell to him,

Till he unseam’d him from the nave to th’ chops,

And fix’d his head upon our battlements.


O valiant cousin, worthy gentleman!


As whence the sun gins his reflection

Shipwracking storms and direful thunders break,

So from that spring whence comfort seem’d to come

Discomfort swells. Mark, King of Scotland, mark!

No sooner justice had, with valor arm’d,

Compell’d these skipping kerns to trust their heels,

But the Norweyan lord, surveying vantage,

With furbish’d arms and new supplies of men,

Began a fresh assault.

If I say sooth, I must report they were

As cannons overcharg’d with double cracks, so they

Doubly redoubled strokes upon the foe.

Except they meant to bathe in reeking wounds,

Or memorize another Golgotha,

I cannot tell—

But I am faint, my gashes cry for help.

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