Henry King

(16 January 1592 – 30 September 1669 / Worminghall, Buckinghamshire)

A Renunciation


WE, that did nothing study but the way
To love each other, with which thoughts the day
Rose with delight to us and with them set,
Must learn the hateful art, how to forget.
We, that did nothing wish that Heaven could give
Beyond ourselves, nor did desire to live
Beyond that wish, all these now cancel must,
As if not writ in faith, but words and dust.
Yet witness those clear vows which lovers make,
Witness the chaste desires that never brake
Into unruly heats; witness that breast
Which in thy bosom anchor'd his whole rest--
'Tis no default in us: I dare acquite
Thy maiden faith, thy purpose fair and white
As thy pure self. Cross planets did envy
Us to each other, and Heaven did untie
Faster than vows could bind. Oh, that the stars,
When lovers meet, should stand opposed in wars!

Since then some higher Destinies command,
Let us not strive, nor labour to withstand
What is past help. The longest date of grief
Can never yield a hope of our relief:
Fold back our arms; take home our fruitless loves,
That must new fortunes try, like turtle-doves
Dislodged from their haunts. We must in tears
Unwind a love knit up in many years.
In this last kiss I here surrender thee
Back to thyself.--So, thou again art free:
Thou in another, sad as that, resend
The truest heart that lover e'er did lend.
Now turn from each: so fare our sever'd hearts
As the divorced soul from her body parts.

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read poems about / on: faith, heaven, grief, kiss, sad, rose, hope, home, star

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (A Renunciation by Henry King )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  9. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. It is nature, hasmukh amathalal
  2. Difference, hasmukh amathalal
  3. Own earth own life, gajanan mishra
  4. My Girl, Dasia Deas
  5. Silent Messages, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  6. the old man is bitten, RIC S. BASTASA
  7. ....and then an empty morning sky, RIC S. BASTASA
  8. Magnitude Of Life, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  9. At present, hasmukh amathalal
  10. and then the night swallows her includin.., RIC S. BASTASA

Poem of the Day

poet Robert Herrick

Here we are all, by day; by night we're hurl'd
By dreams, each one into a several world.... Read complete »

   
[Hata Bildir]