Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. I. Of Home: of Friendship
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume I. Of Home: of Friendship.  1904.
Poems of Friendship
William Dunbar (1460?–1520?)
Modernized by H. Macaulay Fitzgibbon

IF ye would love and lovèd be,
In mind keep well these thingis three,
And sadly in thy breast imprint,—
Be secret, true and patient!
For he that patience can not leir,        5
He shall displeasance have perquier,
Though he had all this worldis rent:
Be secret, true and patient!
For who that secret cannot be,
Him all good fellowship shall flee,        10
And credence none shall him be lent:
Be secret, true and patient!
And he that is of heart untrue,
From he be ken’d farewell! adieu!
Fie on him! fie! his fame is went:        15
Be secret, true and patient!
Thus he that wants ane of these three
Ane lover glad may never be,
But aye in some thing discontent:
Be secret, true and patient!        20
Nought with thy tongue thyself discure
The thingis that thou hast of nature;
For if thou dost, thou shalt repent:
Be secret, true and patient!

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