Do Not Think - Poem by Lucius Furius
Do not think because I have a roving eye
that I am any less in love with you.
A knowing wink, a bashful smile, a haughty stare,
these are the terra incognita
which I, beauty's student, must needs explore.
But like Raleigh in Guiana,
in search of El Dorado, thinking of his Bess*,
or Daniel Boone in Kentucky,
it is you I am thinking of, always,
and it is to you I will, Odysseus-like, always return.
Poet's Notes about The Poem
One of the Queen's Maids of Honour, who became pregnant by Raleigh in 1591. They secretly (without the Queen's permission) married that same year. The queen found out and was not pleased.
In 1603 Raleigh was wrongly tried and convicted of treason against the Crown, having been set up by one of his enemies in the royal court. His sentence was immediate death. Imprisoned in the Tower of London on what he believed was the eve of his execution, he composed this letter to his wife.
He was not executed the following morning but remained confined in the Tower of London until 1616, when he was released to lead an expedition in search of gold for the crown. However, in 1618 he was returned to the Tower of London and *was* executed by Queen Elizabeth I's successor, James I.
This poem is one of the Humanist Art Homepage, Scraps of Faith poems.
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