The Third Booke of Ayres
XIIII.
by Thomas Campion.


What is it all that men possesse, among themselues conuersing ?
Wealth or fame, or some such boast, scarce worthy the rehearsing.
Women onely are mens good, with them in loue conuersing.

If weary, they prepare vs rest ; if sicke, their hand attends vs ;
When with griefe our hearts are prest, their comfort best befriends vs :
Sweet or sowre, they willing goe to share what fortune sends vs.

What pretty babes with paine they beare, our name and form presenting!
What we get, how wise they keepe ! by sparing, wants preuenting ;
Sorting all their houshold cares to our obseru'd contenting.

All this, of whose large vse I sing, in two words is expressed ;
Good wife is the good I praise, if by good men possessed ;
Bad with bad in ill sute well ; but good with good liue blessed.




Source:
Campion, Thomas. Campion's Works. Percival Vivian, Ed.
Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1909. 167.





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