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Sir Thomas Wyatt (1503–42). The Poetical Works. 1880.


A Reproof to such as slander Love

LEAVE thus to slander love!

Though evil with such it prove,

Which often use

Love to misuse,

And loving to reprove;

Such cannot choose

For their refuse

But thus to slander Love.

Flee not so much the snare!

Love seldom causeth care.

But by deserts

And crafty parts

Some lose their own welfare.

Be true of heart;

And for no smart,

Flee not so much the snare.

To love, and not to be wise,

Is but a mad device;

Such love doth last

As sure and fast,

As chance on the dice,

A bitter taste

Comes at the last,

To love, and not to be wise.

Such be the pleasant days,

Such be the honest ways,

There is no man

That fully can

Know it, but he that says

Loving to ban

Were folly then;

Such be the pleasant days.

Love is a pleasant fire

Kindled by true desire;

And though the pain

Cause men to plain,

Speed well is oft the hire.

Then though some feign

And lose the gain,

Love is a pleasant fire.

Who most doeth slander love,

The deed must alway prove.

Truth shall excuse

That you accuse

For slander, and reprove.

Not by refuse,

But by abuse,

You most do slander love!

Ye grant it is a snare,

And would us not beware.

Lest that your train

Should be too plain

Ye colour all the care;

Lo! how you feign

Pleasure for pain,

And grant it is a snare

To love, and to be wise.

It were a strange device:

But from that taste

Ye vow the fast,

On cinques though run your die

Ambsace may haste

Your pain to waste.

To love and to be wise.

Of all such pleasant days,

Of all such pleasant plays,

Without desart,

You have your part,

And all the world so says;

Save that poor heart

That for more smart,

Feeleth not such pleasant days.

Such fire, and such heat,

Did never make ye sweat;

For without pain

You best obtain

Too good speed, and too great.

Whoso doeth plain

You best do feign,

Such tire, and such heat.

Who now doth slander Love?