Verse > Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey > Poetical Works
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Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey (1517–47).  The Poetical Works.  1880.
 
Songs and Sonnets
Praise of mean and constant Estate
 
OF thy life, Thomas, 1 this compass well mark:
Not aye with full sails the high seas to beat;
Ne by coward dread, in shunning storms dark,
On shallow shores thy keel in peril freat.
 
Whoso gladly halseth 2 the golden mean,        5
Void of dangers advisedly hath his home;
Not with loathsome muck as a den unclean,
Nor palace like, whereat disdain may glome. 3
 
The lofty pine the great wind often rives;
With violenter sway fallen turrets steep;        10
Lightnings assault the high mountains and clives. 4
A heart well stay’d, in overthwartes 5 deep.
 
Hopeth amends; in sweet, doth fear the sour.
God that sendeth, withdraweth winter sharp.
Now ill, not aye thus; once Phœbus to low’r,        15
With bow unbent, shall cease; and frame to harp.
 
His voice in strait estate appear thou stout;
And so wisely, when lucky gale of wind
All thy puft sails shall fill, look well about;
Take in a reef: haste is waste, proof doth find.        20
 
Note 1. Sir Thomas Wyatt. [back]
Note 2. Embraceth. [back]
Note 3. Look at scornfully. [back]
Note 4. Steep cliffs. [back]
Note 5. Adverse fortunes. [back]
 
 
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