Thursday, December 05, 2013


Not Wise but Mad

James Ryman, poem LXXXIV, stanzas 1-2, in J. Zupitza, "Die Gedichte des Franziskaners Jacob Ryman," Archiv für das Studium der neueren Sprachen and Litteraturen 89 (1892) 167-338 (at 253; line numbers added):
Atte sumtyme mery, at sume tyme sadde;
At sumtyme wele, at sumtyme woo;
At sumtyme sory, at sumtyme gladde;
At sumtyme frende, at sumtyme foo;
At sumtyme richesse and welthe is hadde,        5
At sumtyme it is gone vs froo;
Truly, he is not wyse, but madde,
That aftur worldly welthe will goo.

As medowe floures of swete odoures
Vadeth to erthe by theire nature,        10
Likewise richesse and grete honoures
Shall vade fro euery creature;
Therfore to suffre grete doloures
I holde it best to do oure cure
And to forsake castillis and toures,        15
So that of blisse we may be sure.
6 gone vs froo: gone from us
10, 12 Vadeth ... vade: Fadeth ... fade
15 castillis and toures: castles and towers

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