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But ye whom love hath bound, by order of desire,
To love your lords, whose good deserts none other would

require, Come ye yet once again, and set your foot by mine, Whose woful plight and sorrows great no tongue may

well define. My love and lord, alas ! in whom consists my wealth, Hath fortune sent to pass the seas, in hazard of his

health. Whom I was wont t'embrace with well contented mind, Is now amid the foaming floods at pleasure of the wind, Where God will him preserve, and soon him home me



Without which hope my life, alas ! were shortly at an end. Whose absence yet, although my hope doth tell me plain, With short return he comes anon, yet ceaseth not my

pain. The fearful dreams I have ofttimes do grieve me so, That when I wake, I lie in doubt, where 1 they be true

or no.


Sometime the roaring seas, me seems, do grow so high, That

my dear lord, ay me! alas ! methinks I see him

die. And other time the same doth tell me he is come, And playing, where I shall him find, with his fair little

son.2 So forth I go apace to see that liefsome 3 sight, And with a kiss, methinks I say, 'Welcome, my lord,

my knight; Welcome, my sweet ; alas ! the stay of

my welfare

; Thy presence bringeth forth a truce betwixt me and my


"Where:' whether._? « Fair little son :' this marks the reference to be to Lady Surrey and her son Thomas—* Liefsome :' dear, welcome.



Then lively doth he look, and salueth me again,
And saith, My dear, how is it now that you have all

this pain ?' Wherewith the heavy cares, that heap'd are in my breast, Break forth and me dischargen clean of all my huge

unrest. But when I me awake, and find it but a dream, The anguish of my former woe beginneth more extreme ; And me tormenteth so that unneath 1


I find Some hidden place, wherein to slake the gnawing of my

mind. Thus every way you see with absence how I burn; And for my wound no cure I find, but hope of good re

turn : Save when I think, by sour how sweet is felt the more, It doth abate some of my pains, that I abode before ; And then unto myself I say, ' When we shall meet, But little while shall seem this pain, the joy shall be so

sweet.' Ye wiuds, I you conjure, in chiefest of your rage, That ye my lord me safely send, my sorrows to assuage; And that I may not long abide in this excess, Do your good will to cure a wight that liveth in distress.





1 Give place, ye lovers, here before

That spent your boasts and brags in vain;
My lady's beauty passeth more
The best of yours, I dare well sayen,

1. Unneath :' with difficulty.

Than doth the sun the candle light,

Or brightest day the darkest night. 2 And thereto hath a troth as just

As had Penelope the fair ;
For what she saith, ye may it trust,

As it by writing sealèd were :
And virtues hath she many mo

Than I with pen have skill to show. 3 I could rehearse, if that I would,

The whole effect of Nature's plaint,
When she had lost the perfect mould,

The like to whom she could not paint:
With wringing hands, how she did cry,

And what she said, I know it, I.
4 I know she swore with raging mind,

Her kingdom only set apart,
There was no loss, by law of kind,

That could have gone so near her heart;
And this was chiefly all her pain,

• She could not make the like again.' 5 Sith Nature thus gave her the praise,

To be the chiefest work she wrought,
In faith, methink! some better ways

On your behalf might well be sought,
Than to compare, as ye have done,
To match the candle with the sun.


If he that erst the form so lively drew

Of Venus' face, triumph'd in painter's art,

Thy father then what glory did ensue,

By whose pencil a goddess made thou art ? Touched with flame that figure made some rue,

And with her love surprised many a heart. There lack'd yet that should cure their hot desire : Thou canst inflame and quench the kindled fire.


1 ALTHOUGH I had a check,

To give the mate is hard ;
For I have found a neck,

To keep my men in guard.
And you that hardy are,

To give so great assay
Unto a man of war,

To drive his men away ;

2 I rede ? you take good heed,

And mark this foolish verse;
For I will so provide,

That I will have your ferse.
And when your ferse is had,

And all your war is done,
Then shall yourself be glad

To end that you begun.

3 For if by chance I win

Your person in the field,
Too late then come you in

Yourself to me to yield. 1. Neck :' apparently an expression used in chess playing, but the meaning is not clear._2 • Rede: ' advise.—3* Ferse :' the queen at chess.

For I will use my power,

As captain full of might;
And such I will devour

As use to show me spite.

4 And for because you gave

Me check in such degree,
This vantage, lo! I have,

Now check, and guard to thee.
Defend it if thou may;

Stand stiff in thine estate :
For sure I will assay,

If I can give thee mate.



Too dearly had I bought my green and youthful years, If in mine age I could not find when craft for love

appears; And seldom though I come in court among the rest, Yet can I judge in colours dim as deep as can the best. Where grief torments the man that suff'reth secret smaat, To break it forth unto some friend, it easeth well the

heart. So stands it now with me, for, my beloved friend, This case is thine, for whom I feel such torment of my

mind; And for thy sake I burn so in my secret breast, That till thou know my whole disease, my heart can

have no rest. I see how thine abuse hath wrested so thy wits, That all it yields to thy desire, and follows thee by fits.


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