Lo, what it is to love!


Lo, what it is to love!
Learn ye, that list to prove,
At me, I say,
No ways that may
The grounded grief remove.
My life alway
That doth decay —
Lo, what it is to love!

Flee alway from the snare.
Learn by me to beware
Of such a train
Which doubles pain.
And endless woe and care
That doth retain,
Which to refrain
Flee alway from the snare.

To love and to be wise!
To rage with good advice!
Now thus, now then,
Now off, now on,
Uncertain as the dice!
There is no man
At once that can
To love and to be wise.

Such are the diverse throes,
Such pains that no man knows
That hath not proved
And once have loved.
Such are the raging woes
Sooner reproved
Than well removed.
Such are the diverse throes.

Love is a fervent fire
Kindled by hot desire;
For short pleasure
Long displeasure.
Repentance is the hire,
A poor treasure
Without measure.
Love is a fervent fire.

Lo, what it is to love!

The Answer

Leave thus to slander love,
Though ill 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 leese their own welfare.
Be true of hearts
And for no smarts
Flee not so much the snare.

To love and not be wise
Is but a mad device.
Such love doth last
As sure and fast
As chances on the dice.
A bitter taste
Comes at the last
To love and not be wise.

Such be the pleasant days,
Such be the honest ways,
There is no man
That fully can
Know them but that he 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,
Sped well is oft the hire.
Then though some feign
And leese the gain
Love is a pleasant fire.

The Answer to This

Who most doth 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 syns though run your dice,
Ambs-ace may haste
Your pain to waste.
To love and to be wise!

Of all such pleasant days,
Of all such pleasant plays
Without desert
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
To good speed and to great.
Who so doth plain,
You best do feign
Such fire and such heat.

Who now doth slander love?
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