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> Geoffrey Chaucer, Feel free to add replies to this....
Cleo_Serapis
post Aug 10 03, 15:28
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Works of Geoffrey Chaucer

A Ballad of Gentleness

The firste stock-father of gentleness,
What man desireth gentle for to be,
Must follow his trace, and all his wittes dress,
Virtue to love, and vices for to flee;
For unto virtue longeth dignity,
And not the reverse, safely dare I deem,
All wear he mitre, crown, or diademe.

This firste stock was full of righteousness,
True of his word, sober, pious, and free,
Clean of his ghost, and loved business,
Against the vice of sloth, in honesty;
And, but his heir love virtue as did he,
He is not gentle, though he riche seem,
All wear he mitre, crown, or diademe.

Vice may well be heir to old richess,
But there may no man, as men may well see,
Bequeath his heir his virtuous nobless;
That is appropried to no degree,
But to the first Father in majesty,
Which makes his heire him that doth him queme,
All wear he mitre, crown, or diademe.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Proverbs of Chaucer

What should these clothes thus manifold,
Lo! this hot summer's day?
After great heate cometh cold;
No man cast his pilche away.
Of all this world the large compass
Will not in mine arms twain;
Who so muche will embrace,
Little thereof he shall distrain.

The world so wide, the air so remuable,
The silly man so little of stature;
The green of ground and clothing so mutable,
The fire so hot and subtile of nature;
The water never in one -- what creature
That made is of these foure thus flitting,
May steadfast be, as here, in his living?

The more I go, the farther I am behind;
The farther behind, the nearer my war's end;
The more I seek, the worse can I find;
The lighter leave, the lother for to wend;
The better I live, the more out of mind;
Is this fortune, n'ot I, or infortune;
Though I go loose, tied am I with a loigne.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Rondel of Merciless Beauty

Your two great eyes will slay me suddenly;
Their beauty shakes me who was once serene;
Straight through my heart the wound is quick and keen.

Only your word will heal the injury
To my hurt heart, while yet the wound is clean -
Your two great eyes will slay me suddenly;
Their beauty shakes me who was once serene.

Upon my word, I tell you faithfully
Through life and after death you are my queen;
For with my death the whole truth shall be seen.
Your two great eyes will slay me suddenly;
Their beauty shakes me who was once serene;
Straight through my heart the wound is quick and keen.


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