Verse > John Donne > The Poems of John Donne
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John Donne (1572–1631).  The Poems of John Donne.  1896.
 
Songs and Sonnets
Twickenham Garden
 
BLASTED with sighs, and surrounded with tears,
  Hither I come to seek the spring,
And at mine eyes, and at mine ears,
  Receive such balms as else cure 1 every thing.
  But O! self-traitor, I do bring        5
The spider Love, 2 which transubstantiates all,
And can convert manna to gall;
And that this place may thoroughly be thought
True paradise, I have the serpent brought.
 
’Twere wholesomer for me that winter did        10
  Benight the glory of this place,
And that a grave frost did forbid
  These trees to laugh and mock me to my face;
  But that I may not 3 this disgrace
Endure, nor yet leave loving, 4 Love, let me        15
Some senseless piece of this place be;
Make me a mandrake, so I may grow here,
Or a stone fountain weeping out my year. 5
 
Hither with crystal phials, lovers, come,
  And take my tears, which are love’s wine,        20
And try your mistress’ tears at home,
  For all are false, that taste not just like mine.
  Alas! hearts do not in eyes shine,
Nor can you more judge women’s thoughts by tears,
Than by her shadow what she wears.        25
O perverse sex, where none is true but she,
Who’s therefore true, because her truth kills me.
 
Note 1. l. 4. 1635, balm as else cures [back]
Note 2. l. 6. 1669, spider’s Love [back]
Note 3. l. 14. 1669, since I cannot [back]
Note 4. l. 15. 1635, nor leave this garden [back]
Note 5. l. 18. So 1633, 1669; 1635, the year [back]
 
 
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