Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Diana
Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
The Fourth Decade
Sonnet V. Ready to seek out death in my disgrace
Henry Constable (1562–1613)
READY to seek out death in my disgrace,
  My Mistress ’gan to smooth her gathered brows;
  Whereby I am reprievèd for a space.
  O Hope and Fear! who half your torments knows?
It is some mercy in a black-mouthed Judge        5
  To haste his prisoner’s end, if he must die.
  Dear! if all other favour you shall grudge,
  Do speedy execution with your eye!
With one sole look, you leave in me no soul.
  Count it a loss to lose a faithful slave!        10
  Would God, that I might hear my last bell toll,
  So in your bosom I might dig my grave.
Doubtful delay is worse than any fever.
Or help me soon! or cast me off for ever!

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