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The Sun Hath Twice

The sun hath twice brought forth the tender green,
And clad the earth in lively lustiness;
Once have the winds the trees despoiled clean,
And now again begins their cruelness,
Since I have hid under my breast the harm
That never shall recover healthfulness.
The winter's hurt recovers with the warm;
The parched green restored is with shade;
What warmth, alas, may serve for to disarm
The frozen heart that mine in flame hath made?
What cold again is able to restore
My fresh green years that wither thus and fade?
Alas, I see nothing to hurt so sore
But time sometime reduceth a return;
Yet time my harm increaseth more and more,
And seem to have my cure always in scorn.
Strange kind of death in life that I do try,
At hand to melt, far off in flame to burn;
And like as time list to my cure apply,
So doth each place my comfort clean refuse.
Each thing alive, that sees the heaven with eye,
With cloak of night may cover and excuse
Himself from travail of the day's unrest,
Save I, alas, against all others use,
That then stir up the torment of my breast
To curse each star as causer of my fate.
And when the sun hath eke the dark repressed
And brought the day, it doth nothing abate
The travail of my endless smart and pain.
For then, as one that hath the light in hate,
I wish for night, more covertly to plain
And me withdraw from every haunted place,
Lest in my cheer my chance should 'pear too plain;
And with my mind I measure, pace by pace,
To seek that place where I myself had lost,
That day that I was tangled in that lace,
In seeming slack that knitteth ever most;
But never yet the travail of my thought
Of better state could catch a cause to boast.
For if I find that sometime that I have sought
Those stars by whom I trusted of the port,
My sails do fall, and I advance right naught,
As anchored fast; my sprites do all resort
To stand atgaas*, and sink in more and more [gazing]
The deadly harm which she doth take in sport.
Lo, if I seek, how I do find my sore.
And if I fly, I carry with me still
The venomed shaft which doth his force restore
By haste of flight. And I may plain my fill
Unto myself, unless this careful song
Print in your heart some parcel of my will.
For I, alas, in silence all too long
Of mine old hurt yet feel the wound but green.
Rue on my life, or else your cruel wrong
Shall well appear, and by my death be seen.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

2:19 min read

Henry Howard

Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey, KG, (courtesy title), was an English nobleman, politician and poet. He was one of the founders of English Renaissance poetry and the last known execution by King Henry VIII. He was a first cousin of both Queen Anne Boleyn and Queen Catherine Howard, second and fifth wives of King Henry VIII. His name is usually associated in literature with that of Wyatt, who was the older poet of the two. He was the son of Thomas Howard, Earl of Surrey and when his father became Duke of Norfolk (1524) the son adopted the courtesy title of Earl of Surrey. Owing largely to the powerful position of his father, Surrey took a prominent part in the Court life of the time, and served as a soldier both in France and Scotland. He was a man of reckless temper, which involved him in many quarrels, and finally brought upon him the wrath of the aging and embittered Henry VIII. He was arrested, tried for treason and beheaded on Tower Hill. more…

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