The Devonshire Manuscript/Me list no more to sing

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The Devonshire Manuscript
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My hope alas hath me abusid Nowe fare well love and theye lawes forever
The Devonshire Manuscript facsimile 74v

f. [74v]

1    Me list no more to sing
2    of love nor of suche thing
3    howe sore that{{th}+t+} yt me wring
4    for what I song or spake
5    men dede my songis mistake /

6    my songes{es} ware to defuse
7    theye made folke to muse
8    therefor me to excuse
9    theye shall be song more plaine
10    nothr of Ioye nor payne /

11    What vailith then to sy skyp
12    at fructe over the lipp
13    w1for frute with{w+t+}outen taste
14    Dothe noght but rott & waste

15    What vailith vndre kaye
16    to kepe treasure alwaye
17    that never shall se daye
18    yf yt be not vsid
19    yt ys but abusid

20    What vaylethe the flowre
21    to stond still and whither.
22    yf no man yt savor
23    yt servis onlye for sight
24    and fadith towardes{es} night

25    Therefore fere not tessaye to essay 
26    to gadre ye that ye maye
27    the flower that this daye
28    is fresher then the next
29    marke well I saye this text

30    Let not the frute be lost
31    that is desired moste
32    Delight shall quite the{{th}+e+} coste
33    yf hit be tane in tyme /
34    small labor is to clyme

35    and as for siche treasure
36    that makithe the the Richer
37    and no dele the porer
38    when it is gyven or lente
39    {_e}{es} me thinckes yt ware well spente

40    Yf this be undre miste
41    and not well playnlye wyste
42    vndrestonde me who lyste
43    for I reke not a bene
44    I wott what I doo mean


Notes & Glosses edit

     1. The mark may be scribal and intended to designate the omitted line. The same mark occurs on 74r.

Commentary edit

Attributed to Sir Thomas Wyatt,[1] this poem was entered by H8 and elaborates on a carpe diem theme.

H8 uses various modes to mark stanzas, but does so inconsistently. Some stanzas have one or a combination of the following: the first word of the first line is capitalized, the lines following the first line are indented, or a space is left to separate the stanza from the following. Some stanzas have no mark to differentiate them (especially stanzas seven and eight).

Works Cited edit