Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Sonnets after Astrophel, etc.
Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
Sonnets after Astrophel, etc.
Canto quinto: A day, a night, an hour of sweet content
A DAY, a night, an hour of sweet content
Is worth a world consumed in fretful care.
Unequal gods! in your arbitrement!
To sort us days whose sorrows endless are!
  And yet what were it? as a fading flower;        5
  To swim in bliss a day, a night, an hour.
What plague is greater than the grief of mind?
The grief of mind that eats in every vein,
In every vein that leads such clods behind,
Such clods behind as breed such bitter pain.        10
  So bitter pain that none shall ever find,
  What plague is greater than the grief of mind?
Doth sorrow fret thy soul? O direful spirit!
Doth pleasure feed thy heart? O blessed man!
Hast thou been happy once? O heavy plight!        15
Are thy mishaps forepast? O happy then!
  Or hast thou bliss in eld? O bliss too late!
  But hast thou bliss in youth? O sweet estate!

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