“Himself let him unknown contain”

By Tom Clark b. 1941 Tom Clark
Wyatt, with no insurance on his own head,
watching the execution of Anne Boleyn
from his cell in the Tower, while beyond
on Tower Hill her lovers also are executed,

reflects upon his wasted virtue and now
redundant innocence, rueful he ever did
let his name be known beyond the door of
his soul or hung his star from fate thrones.

Tom Clark, “ ‘Himself let him unknown contain’ ” from Light and Shade: New and Selected Poems. Copyright � 2006 by Tom Clark. Used with the
permission of Coffee House Press, www.coffeehousepress.org.

Source: Sleepwalkers Fate: New and Selected Poems (1992)

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Tom Clark b. 1941

POET’S REGION U.S., Western

SCHOOL / PERIOD New York School (2nd Generation)

Subjects Living, Disappointment & Failure, History & Politics, Social Commentaries, Death

 Tom  Clark

Biography

Tom Clark has combined the diverse roles of poet, biographer, novelist, dramatist, reviewer, and sportswriter during his writing career. In addition to dozens of books of poetry, a play, two novels, two story collections, and numerous biographies of literary figures, Clark's works include a book co-written with star baseball pitcher Mark Fidrych, poems about such sports legends as Catfish Hunter, Vida Blue and Bert Campaneris, . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Disappointment & Failure, History & Politics, Social Commentaries, Death

POET’S REGION U.S., Western

SCHOOL / PERIOD New York School (2nd Generation)

Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.