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John Bartlet

A Booke of Ayres


XII. I would thou wert not fayre

      1 I would thou wert not fayre or I were wise,
         I would thou hadst no face or I no eyes,
         I would thou wert not wise or I not fond,
         Or thou not free or I not so in bond.

      2 But thou art fayre and I cannot be wise,
         Thy sun-like face hath blinded both mine eyes,
         Thou canst not but be wise, nor I but fond,
         Nor thou but free, nor I but still in band.

      3 Yet am I wise to thinke that thou art faire,
         Mine eyes their purenes in thy face repaire,
         Nor am I fond that do thy wisedome see,
         Nor yet in bond because that thou art free.

      4 Then in thy beauty onely make me wise,
         And in thy face, the grace, guide both mine eyes,
         And in thy wisedom onely see me fond,
         And in thy freedome keepe me still in bond.

      5 So shalt thou still be faire, and I be wise,
         Thy face shines still vpon my clered eyes,
         Thy wisedome onely see how I am fond,
         Thy freedome onely keepe me still in bond.

      6 So would I thou were faire, and I were wise,
         So would I thou hadst thy face, and I mine eyes,
         So would I thou wert wise, and I were fond,
         And thou wert free and I were still in bond.

Nicolas Breton (?)


Online text copyright ©, Harald Lillmeyer