Verse > Anthologies > Edward Farr, comp. > Jacobean Poetry
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Edward Farr, ed.  Select Poetry of the Reign of King James the First.  1847.
 
A Moral
LXXXIX. Samuel Rowlands
 
HE 1 that performes not what he ought,
  But doth the same neglect,
Let him be sure not to receive
  The thinge he doth expect.
 
When once the tall and loftie tree        5
  Vnto the ground doth fall,
Why euery peassont hath an axe
  To hew his boughes withall.
 
He that for virtue merrits well,
  And yet doth nothing clayme,        10
A double kind of recompence
  Deserueth for the same.
 
Acquaint me but with whom thou goest,
  And thy companions tell,
I will resolue thee what thou doest,        15
  Whether ill done or well.
 
He knowes enough that knoweth nought,
  If he can silence keepe:
The tongue oft makes the heart to sigh,
  The eyes to waile and weepe.        20
 
He takes the best and choycest course
  Of any man doth live,
That takes good counsell when his friend
  Doth that rich iewell give.
 
Note 1. LXXXIX. Samuel Rowlands was a writer both in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, and in that of King James. In the latter reign he published thirteen different volumes, chiefly secular. The extract here is derived from “Diogenes’ Lanthorne,” which was published in 1607, and which consists of Fables with morals having a religious or virtuous tendency. The stanzas are a portion of a moral derived from the conversation of Diogenes with Alexander. [back]
 
 
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