Sunday, August 08, 2010


I Know Myself a Man

Sir John Davies, from Nosce Teipsum, in Norman Ault, ed., Elizabethan Lyrics (New York: Capricorn Books, 1960), p. 272:
I know my body's of so frail a kind,
  As force without, fevers within, can kill;
I know the heavenly nature of my mind,
  But 'tis corrupted both in wit and will.

I know my soul hath power to know all things,
  Yet is she blind and ignorant of all;
I know I am one of nature's little kings,
  Yet to the least and vilest things am thrall.

I know my life's a pain, and but a span;
  I know my sense is mocked with everything;
And to conclude, I know myself a man,
  Which is a proud, and yet a wretched thing.
Worthington Whittredge, Retrospection

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