If ever man might him avaunt


If ever man might him avaunt
Of Fortune's friendly cheer
It was myself, I must it grant,
For I have bought it dear.
And dearly have I held also
The glory of her name
In yielding her such tribute, lo,
As did set forth her fame.

Sometime I stood so in her grace
That, as I would require,
Each joy I thought did me embrace
That furthered my desire.
And all those pleasures, lo, had I
That fancy might support
And nothing she did me deny
That was to my comfort.

I had (what would you more, perdie?)
Each grace that I did crave.
Thus Fortune's will was unto me
All thing that I would have.
But all too rathe, alas the while,
She built on such a ground.
In little space too great a guile
In her now have I found.

For she hath turned so her wheel
That I, unhappy man,
May wail the time that I did feel
Wherewith she fed me then.
For broken now are her behests
And pleasant looks she gave;
And therefore now all my requests
From peril cannot save.

Yet would I well it might appear
To her, my chief regard,
Though my deserts have been too dear
To merit such reward.
Sith Fortune's will is now so bent
To plague me thus, poor man,
I must myself therewith content
And bear it as I can.
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