Global Utilities

Mary Wroth's Poetry: An Electronic Edition

Wroth Poem - F100 - O! that I might but now as ſenceles bee

Folger Image Folger Transcription Folger Modernisation PA Transcription PA Modernisation Urania Transcription Urania Modernisation
F100 F100mod U34 U34mod

O! that I might but now as ſenceles bee
of my felt paines, as is that pleaſant tree
of the ſweet muſique thou deere bird dost make,
who I imagin doth my woes partake,
yett contrary wee doe owr paſsions moue
ſince in ſweet notes thou doest thy ſorrowes proue,
I, butt in teares, and ſighs can show I grieue,
and best spent too, ſoe ſome will them beeleeue;
butt yett (allas) thy pleaſure makes mee finde
that hapines to mee, as loue is blinde,
and thus thy wrongs in ſweetnes to attire
throwſe downe my hopes, while lasting woes aspire,
beeſids of mee th'aduantage thou hast gott,
thy griefe thou utterest, mine I utter nott,
Yett thus att last wee may agree in one
I mourne for what now is, thou what is gone;
Crown Song 3a ('O that I now')

O! that I might but now as senseless be
    Of my felt pains, as is that pleasant tree
    Of the sweet music thou dear bird dost make,
    Who I imagine doth my woes partake,
    Yet contrary we do our passions move
    Since in sweet notes thou dost thy sorrows prove,
    I but in tears and sighs* can show I grieve,
    And best spent too, so some will* them believe;
    But yet (alas) thy* pleasure makes me find
    That happiness to me, as love is blind,
    And thus* thy wrongs in sweetness to attire
    Throws down my hopes, while lasting* woes aspire,
    Besides of me th'advantage thou hast got,
    Thy grief thou utterest, mine I utter not.
    Yet thus at last we may agree in one
    I mourn* for what now* is, thou what is gone.


While in F this forms part of the miscellaneous songs following the crown sequence of sonnets, in Urania this is a poem purportedly written by the Queen of Naples, upon hearing 'a nightingale sweetly singing' in Book Three (fol. 416). [U34]

'tears and sighs' = 'sighs and tears' in U.
'best spent too, so some will' = 'those best spent, if worth do' in U.
'but yet (alas) thy pleasure' = 'yet thy sweet pleasures' in U.
'thus' = 'these' in U.
'while lasting' = 'to make my' in U.
'mourn' = 'moure' in U.
'now' = 'still' in U.

O that I might but now as ſenſeleſſe bee
Of my felt paines, as is that pleaſant Tree,
Of the ſweet muſique, thou deare Byrd doſt make,
Who I imagine doth my woes partake.
Yet contrary we doe our paſſions mooue,
Since in ſweet notes thou doſt thy ſorrowes prooue.
I but in ſighs, and teares, can ſhew I grieue,
And thoſe beſt ſpent, if worth doe them beleeue.
Yet thy ſweet pleaſures makes me euer finde
That happineſſe to me, as Loue is blinde,
And theſe thy wrongs in ſweetneſſe to attire,
Throwes downe my hopes to make my woes aſpire.
Beſides, of me th'aduantage thou haſt got,
Thy griefe thou vtter'ſt, mine I vtter not.
Yet thus at laſt we may agree in one,
I moure for what ſtill is, thou, what is gone.

Crown Song Unnumbered ('O that I might now senseless be')

O! that I might but now as senseless be
    Of my felt pains, as is that pleasant tree
    Of the sweet music thou dear bird dost make,
    Who I imagine doth my woes partake,
    Yet contrary we do our passions move
    Since in sweet notes thou dost thy sorrows prove,
    I, but in sighs and tears can show I grieve,
    And those best spent, if worth do them believe;
    Yet thy sweet pleasures makes me find
    That happiness to me, as love is blind,
    And these thy wrongs in sweetness to attire
    throws down my hopes, to make my woes aspire,
    Besides of me th'advantage thou hast got,
    Thy grief thou utterest, mine I utter not.
    Yet thus at last we may agree in one
    I more* for what still is, thou what is gone.


More: 'moure' is perhaps a mis-transcription of F 'mourn'.

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