Tamburlaine as Pills

Kenneth Tynan's reaction to an overdose of "Tamburlaine the Great":

The supporting cast, studded as it is with constantly repated names of Usumcasane, Theridamas, Mycetes, Celebinus and Callipine, got blurred in my mind, rather as if they were a horde of pills and wonder drugs bent on decimating one another:

Young Streptomycin, take a thousand horse
And storm the gates of Sulphacetamide!
But who comes here? The currish Pentathol
Doth spur his steed across the grassy plain
With Formalin and mighty Dexamil.
Beard'st thou me here, thou bold Barbiturate?
Sirra, they grandam's dead---old Nembutal.
The spangled stars shall weep for Nembutal,
As Jove himself did cry for Chlorophyll.
She'll serve thy turn, and that of Ephedrine.
Is it not passing brave to be a king,
Aureomycin and Formaldehyde,
Is it not passing brave to be a king
And ride in triumph through Amphetamine?


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