The Will

Before I sigh my last gasp, let me breathe, Great Love, some legacies: here I bequeathe Mine eyes to Argus, if mine eyes can see, If they be blind, then, Love, I give them thee; My tongue to Fame, to embassadors my ears; To women, or the sea, my tears; Thou, Love, hast taught me heretofore By making me serve her who had twenty more, That I should give to none, but such as had too much before. My constancy I to the planets give; My truth to them who at the court do live; Mine ingenuity and openness To Jesuits; to buffoons my pensiveness; My silence to any who abroad have been; My money to a Capuchin. Thou, Love, taught’st me, by appointing me To love there, where no love received can be, Only to give to such as have an incapacity. My faith I give to Roman Catholics; All my good works unto the schismatics Of Amsterdam; my best civility And courtship to an University; My modesty I give to shoulders bare; My patience let gamesters share. Thou, Love, taught’st me, by making me Love her, that holds my love disparity, Only to give to those that count my gifts indignity. I give my reputatiòn to those Which were my friends; mine industry to foes; To schoolmen I bequeathe my doubtfulness; My sickness to physicians, or excess; To Nature all that I in rhyme have writ; And to my company my wit. Thou, Love, by making me adore Her, who begot this love in me before, Taught’st me to make, as though I gave, when I do but restore. To him, for whom the passing-bell next tolls, I give my physic-books; my written rolls Of moral counsels I to Bedlam give: My brazen medals unto them which live In want of bread; to them which pass among All foreigners, mine English tongue. Thou, Love, by making me love one Who thinks her friendship a fit portiòn For younger lovers, dost my gifts thus disproportion. Therefore I ’ll give no more, but I ’ll undo The world by dying; because Love dies too. Then all your beauties will be no more worth Than gold in mines, where none doth draw it forth; And all your graces no more use shall have, Than a sun-dial in a grave. Thou, Love, taught’st me, by making me Love her, who doth neglect both me and thee, To invent and practise this one way to annihilate all three.

1592
Sub Title: 
Poems of Sentiment: II. Life

More from Poet

Jöjj, hölgyem, jöjj és vetkőzz le velem, vágy kínoz, mikor nem szeretkezem. S mint harcos, ha ellenségre talál: lándzsám megfájdul, mert nem döf, csak áll. Öved délkörét oldozd meg hamar: minden tájnál szebb földövet takar. Pruszlidat vesd le, olyan feszesen tapad; más nem lát bele, de nekem...

Before I sigh my last gasp, let me breathe, Great Love, some legacies: here I bequeathe Mine eyes to Argus, if mine eyes can see, If they be blind, then, Love, I give them thee; My tongue to Fame, to embassadors my ears; To women, or the sea, my tears; Thou, Love, hast taught me...

Come live with me, and be my love,
And we will some new pleasures prove
Of golden sands, and crystal brooks,
With silken lines and silver hooks.

There will the river whisp'ring run
Warm'd by thy eyes, more than the sun ;
And there th' enamour'd fish will stay...

Sweetest love, I do not go,
For weariness of thee,
Nor in hope the world can show
A fitter love for me;
But since that I
Must die at last, 'tis best
To use myself in jest
Thus by feign'd deaths to die.

Yesternight the sun went hence,
And yet...

As virtuous men pass mildly away,
And whisper to their souls to go,
Whilst some of their sad friends do say,
"The breath goes now," and some say, "No,"

So let us melt, and make no noise,
No tear-floods, nor sigh-tempests move;
'Twere profanation of our joys...