Come, therefore, mournful Muses, and lament;
And sorrow feed, feeding our souls with sorrow,
Lost to all music now, since everything
From the dull confines of the drooping West
Death says he will undo and drag down low,
And whisper to their souls to go.
Aye, we must die an everlasting death
And see the brave day sunk in hideous night,
His rage, with razing your immortal town,
The burg broken and burnt to brands and ashes.
When night’s black mantle could most darkness prove
A true retreat of sorrow and despair,
Let us roll all our strength, and all—
We shall new shadows make the other way.
Another cento, title from Piers Plowman. Click the last word of each line to find its source.