Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Idea
Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
Sonnet 14. If he, from heaven that filched that living fire
Michael Drayton (1563–1631)
[First printed in 1602 (No. 17), and in all later editions.]

IF he, from heaven that filched that living fire,
Condemned by JOVE to endless torment be!
I greatly marvel, how you still go free!
That far beyond PROMETHEUS did aspire.
  The fire he stole, although of heavenly kind,        5
Which from above he craftily did take,
Of liveless clods, us living men to make;
He did bestow in temper of the mind.
  But you broke into heaven’s immortal store,
Where Virtue, Honour, Wit, and Beauty lay!        10
Which taking thence, you have escaped away,
Yet stand as free as e’er you did before:
  Yet old PROMETHEUS punished for his rape!
  Thus poor thieves suffer, when the greater ’scape.

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