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Elegy Iii: Change - Poem by John Donne

Although thy hand and faith, and good works too,
Have seal'd thy love which nothing should undo,
Yea though thou fall back, that apostasy
Confirm thy love; yet much, much I fear thee.
Women are like the Arts, forc'd unto none,
Open to'all searchers, unpriz'd, if unknown.
If I have caught a bird, and let him fly,
Another fouler using these means, as I,
May catch the same bird; and, as these things be,
Women are made for men, not him, nor me.
Foxes and goats; all beasts change when they please,
Shall women, more hot, wily, wild then these,
Be bound to one man, and did Nature then
Idly make them apter to endure than men?
They are our clogges, not their owne; if a man be
Chain'd to a galley, yet the galley is free;
Who hath a plow-land, casts all his seed corn there,
And yet allows his ground more corn should bear;
Though Danuby into the sea must flow,
The sea receives the Rhene, Volga, and Po.
By nature, which gave it, this liberty
Thou lov'st, but Oh! canst thou love it and me?
Likeness glues love: Then if so thou do,
To make us like and love, must I change too?
More than thy hate, I hate it, rather let me
Allow her change, then change as oft as she,
And so not teach, but force my opinion
To love not any one, nor every one.
To live in one land is captivity,
To run all countries, a wild roguery;
Waters stink soon, if in one place they bide,
And in the vast sea are worse putrified:
But when they kiss one bank, and leaving this
Never look back, but the next bank do kiss,
Then are they purest; Change is the nursery
Of music, joy, life, and eternity.


Comments about Elegy Iii: Change by John Donne

  • Gold Star - 6,523 Points Don Kubicki (7/6/2019 6:35:00 AM)

    Though it sounds illiberal it is a good description of the ideology of his day. (Report) Reply

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Poems About Elegy

  1. 1. Elegy Written In A Country Churchyard , Thomas Gray
  2. 2. Elegy , Dylan Thomas
  3. 3. Elegy For Jane , Theodore Roethke
  4. 4. Duino Elegies: The First Elegy , Rainer Maria Rilke
  5. 5. Elegy In April And September , Wilfred Owen
  6. 6. Elegy Xix: To His Mistress Going To Bed , John Donne
  7. 7. An Imperial Elegy , Wilfred Owen
  8. 8. Duino Elegies: The Tenth Elegy , Rainer Maria Rilke
  9. 9. Duino Elegies: The Fourth Elegy , Rainer Maria Rilke
  10. 10. Elegy To The Memory Of An Unfortunate Lady , Alexander Pope
  11. 11. Elegy In The Classroom , Anne Sexton
  12. 12. Elegy I , Rainer Maria Rilke
  13. 13. A Satirical Elegy On The Death Of A Late.. , Jonathan Swift
  14. 14. Elegy I: Jealousy , John Donne
  15. 15. An Elegy On The Death Of Kenneth Patchen , Lawrence Ferlinghetti
  16. 16. Elegy Xvi: On His Mistress , John Donne
  17. 17. Elegy Xviii: Love's Progress , John Donne
  18. 18. Elegy X: The Dream , John Donne
  19. 19. March Elegy , Anna Akhmatova
  20. 20. Elegy X , Rainer Maria Rilke
  21. 21. Elegy In A Country Churchyard , Gilbert Keith Chesterton
  22. 22. An Elegy On The Death Of A Mad Dog , Oliver Goldsmith
  23. 23. Elegy Xiii: His Parting From Her , John Donne
  24. 24. Elegy Ii: The Anagram , John Donne
  25. 25. Elegy V: His Picture , John Donne
  26. 26. Elegy Iii: Change , John Donne
  27. 27. Elegy , Joseph Brodsky
  28. 28. Elegy , Siegfried Sassoon
  29. 29. Elegy Iv: The Perfume , John Donne
  30. 30. Elegy Ix: The Autumnal , John Donne
  31. 31. Elegy Vii , John Donne
  32. 32. From The Tenth Elegy , Rainer Maria Rilke
  33. 33. Elegy Iv , Rainer Maria Rilke
  34. 34. Elegy Viii: The Comparison , John Donne
  35. 35. Elegy Upon Tiger , Jonathan Swift
  36. 36. Elegy V , Ovid
  37. 37. Elegy , Carolyn Forché
  38. 38. Elegy To Time , Lorraine Margueritte Gasrel ..
  39. 39. Elegy , Edna St. Vincent Millay
  40. 40. An Elegy On A Lap-Dog , John Gay
  41. 41. Elegy Before Death , Edna St. Vincent Millay
  42. 42. Elegy Vi , John Donne
  43. 43. An Elegy In Frost , Sandra Fowler
  44. 44. Elegy , Alan Dugan
  45. 45. Elegy Xvi: The Expostulation , John Donne
  46. 46. Elegy For Tibullus , Ovid
  47. 47. An Elegy Upon James Therburn, In Chatto , James Thomson
  48. 48. Love: An Elegy , Mark Akenside
  49. 49. Elegy , Ambrose Bierce
  50. 50. Elegy Xvii: On His Mistress , John Donne
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