Sir Thomas Wyatt (1503-1542)
Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey (1517-1547)
The soote season, that bud and bloom forth brings,
With green hath clad the hill and eke the vale;
The nightingale with feathers new she sings;
The turtle to her make hath told her tale.
Summer is come, for every spray now springs,
The hart hath hung his old head on the pale;
The buck in brake his winter coat he flings;
The fishes flete with new repaired scale;
The adder all her slough away she slings;
The swift swallow pursueth the flyes smale;
The busy bee her honey now she mings,
Winter is worn that was the flowers' bale.
And thus I see among these pleasant things
Each care decays, and yet my sorrow springs.
George Gascoigne (1525-1577)
You must not wonder, though you think it strange,
To see me hold my lowering head so low;
And that mine eyes take no delight to range
About the gleams which on your face do grow.
The mouse which once hath broken out of trap
Is seldom teased with the trustless bait,
But lies aloof for fear of more mishap,
And feedeth still in doubt of deep deceit.
The scorched fly which once hath 'scap'd the flame
Will hardly come to play again with fire.
Whereby I learn that grievous is the game
Which follows fancy dazzled by desire.
So that I wink or else hold down my head,
Because your blazing eyes my bale have bred.
Giles Fletcher (1549-1611)
Bright matchless star, the honour of the sky,
From whose clear shine heaven's vault hath all his light,
I send these poems to your graceful eye;
Do you but take them, and they have their right.
I build besides a temple to your name,
Wherein my thoughts shall daily sing your praise;
And will erect an altar for the same,
Which shall your virtues and your honour raise.
But heaven the temple of your honour is,
Whose brasen tops your worthy self made proud;
The ground an altar, base for such a bliss
With pity torn, because I sighed so loud.
And since my skill no worship can impart,
Make you an incense of my loving heart.
Sad, all alone, not long I musing sat,
But that my thoughts compelled me to aspire;
A laurel garland in my hand I gat,
So the Muses I approached the nigher.
My suit was this, a poet to become,
To drink with them, and from the heavens be fed.
Phoebus denied, and sware there was no room,
Such to be poets as fond fancy led.
With that I mourned and sat me down to weep;
Venus she smiled, and smiling to me said,
Come drink with me, and sit thee still, and sleep.
This voice I heard; and Venus I obeyed.
That poison sweet hath done me all this wrong,
For now of love must needs be all my song.
William Alabaster (1567-1640)
With heat and cold I feel the spiteful fiend
To work one mischief by two contraries,
With lust he doth me scorch, with languor freeze,
But lust and languor both one Christ offend.
Let contraries with contraries contend,
Let fear of blame and love of Christ arise,
Hot love of Christ to melt in tears mine eyes,
Cold fear of just reproach my shame to extend,
That shame with heat may cool my looser thought,
And tears with cold heat my heart's sluggish deep.
O happy I if that such grace were wrought!
Till then, shame blush because tears cannot weep,
And tears weep you because shame cannot blush,
Till shame from tears, and tears from shame do flush.
Sir Walter Ralegh (1552-1618)
Edmund Spenser (c.1552-1599)
Fulke Greville, Lord Brooke (c.1554-1628)
Caelica, I overnight was finely used,
Lodged in the midst of paradise, your heart;
Kind thoughts had charge I might not be refused,
Of every fruit and flower I had part.
But curious knowledge, blown with busy flame,
The sweetest fruits had in down shadows hidden,
And for it found mine eyes had seen the same,
I from my paradise was straight forbidden.
Where that cur, rumor, runs in every place,
Barking with care, begotten out of fear;
And glassy honor, tender of disgrace,
Stand seraphim to see I come not there;
While that fine soil which all these joys did yield,
By broken fence is proved a common field.
Sir Philip Sidney (1554-1586)
Thomas Watson (c. 1557-1592)
Anne Cecil de Vere, Countess of Oxford (1556-88)
Had with the moorning the Gods left their willes undonea
They had not so soone herited such a soule:
Or if the mouth, tyme did not glotton up all.
Nor I, nor the world, were depriv'd of my Sonne,
Whose brest Venus, with a face dolefull and milde,
Doth washe with golden teares, inveying [sic] the skies
And when the water of the Goddesses eyes,
Makes almost, alive, the Marble, of my Childe:
One byds her leave styll, her dollor so extreme,
Telling her it is not, her young sonne Papheme,
To which she makes aunswer with a voice inflamed
(Feeling therewith her venime, to be more bitter)
As I was of Cupid, even so of it mother
"And a womans last chylde, is the most beloved"
Henry Constable (1562-1613)
Unto the boundless ocean of thy beauty
Runs this poor river, charged with streams of zeal,
Returning thee the tribute of my duty,
Which here my love, my youth, my plaints reveal.
Here I unclasp the book of my charged soul,
Where I have cast th' accounts of all my care;
Here have I summed my sighs. Here I enrol
How they were spent for thee. Look, what they are.
Look on the dear expenses of my youth,
And see how just I reckon with thine eyes.
Examine well thy beauty with my truth,
And cross my cares ere greater sums arise.
Read it, sweet maid, though it be done but slightly;
Who can show all his love, doth love but lightly.
Samuel Daniel (1562-1619)
Mark Alexander Boyd (1562-1601)
Fra bank to bank, fra wood to wood I rin,
Ourhailit with my feeble fantasie;
Like til a leaf that fallis from a tree,
Or til a reed ourblawin with the win.
Twa gods guides me: the ane of tham is blin,
Yea and a bairn brocht up in vanitie;
The next a wife ingenrit of the sea,
And lichter nor a dauphin with her fin.
Unhappy is the man for evermair
That tills the sand and sawis in the air;
But twice unhappier is he, I lairn,
That feidis in his hairt a mad desire,
And follows on a woman throw the fire,
Led by a blind and teachit by a bairn.
Joshua Sylvester (1563-1618)
Michael Drayton (1563-1631)
Barnabe Barnes (1569-1609)
Lady Mary Wroth (1587-1651)
When night's blacke Mantle could most darknesse proue,
And sleepe (deaths Image) did my senses hyre,
From Knowledge of my selfe, then thoughts did moue
Swifter then those, most [swiftnesse] neede require.
In sleepe, a Chariot drawne by wing'd Desire,
I saw; where sate bright Venus Queene of Loue
And at her feete her Sonne, still adding Fire
To burning hearts, which she did hold aboue,
But one heart flaming more then all the rest,
The Goddesse held, and put it to my breast,
Deare Sonne now, said she: thus must we winne;
He her obey'd, and martyr'd my poore heart.
I waking hop'd as dreames it would depart,
Yet since, O me, a Lover I haue beene.
William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
Alexander Craig (c.1567-1627)
Sir John Davies (1569-1626)
Richard Barnfield (1574-1627)
William Percy (1575-1648)
Thomas Lodge (1558-1625)
King James 1 (1566-1625)
First love, as greatest God above the rest,
Graunt thou to me a pairt of my desyre :
That when in verse of thee I write my best,
This onely thing I earnestly requyre,
That thou my veine Poetique so inspyre,
As they may suirlie think, all that it reid,
When I descryve thy might and thundring fyre,
That they do see thy self in verie deid
From heaven thy greatest Thunders for to leid,
And syne vpon the Gyants heads to fall :
Or cumming to thy Semele with speid
In Thunders least, at her request and call :
Or throwing Phaethon downe from heaven to eard.
With threatning thunders, making monstrous reard.
Anon - Zepheria
My fate, oh not my fault hath me debard
From forth thy fauors sunny Sanctuary,
Vnto the deare applause of thy regard,
Witnesse the world how my gest did marry.
My tears, my sighs, all haue I summ'd in thee:
Conceyt the totall, doe not partialize
And then accept of heir infinitie
As part payment to exacting eyes
And yet thy trophy to enoble more
My heart prepares anew to Thezaurize
Sighs and loue options sike as it sent of yore
Saue number they, faith only these englories:
Yet though I thus enwealthy thy exchequer
Seem it not strange, I liue Zepherias debte.
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Only after the last tree has been cut down|
Only after the last river has been poisoned
Only after the last fish has been caught
Only then will we realise that money cannot be eaten
- Cree Indian Prophesy