Verse > Anthologies > Hunt and Lee, eds. > The Book of the Sonnet
Hunt and Lee, comps.  The Book of the Sonnet.  1867.
II. Sense of the Fragility of All Things and of the Unseasonableness of Passion in Love, No Preventive of Love or Poetry
By William Drummond, of Hawthornden (1585–1649)
I KNOW that all beneath the moon decays,
And what by mortals in this world is brought
In time’s great periods shall return to naught;
That fairest states have fatal nights and days.
I know how all the Muse’s heavenly lays,        5
With toil of sprite which are so dearly bought,
As idle sounds, of few or none are sought;
And that naught lighter is than airy praise.
I know frail beauty like the purple flower
To which one morn oft birth and death affords;        10
That love a jarring is of minds’ accords,
Where sense and will invassall reason’s power.
  Know what I list, this all cannot me move,
  But that, O me! I both must write and love.

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