Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, PRISONED IN WINDSOR, HE RECOUNTETH HIS PLEASURE THERE PASSED, by HENRY HOWARD



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PRISONED IN WINDSOR, HE RECOUNTETH HIS PLEASURE THERE PASSED, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: So cruel prison how could betide, alas
Last Line: To banish the less, I find my chief relief.
Alternate Author Name(s): Surrey, Earl Of
Variant Title(s): In Windsor Castle
Subject(s): Henry Vii, King Of England (1457-1509); Prisons & Prisoners; Windsor Castle; Fitzroy, Henry, Duke Of Richmond; Tudor, Henry; Convicts


So cruel prison how could betide, alas,
As proud Windsor? Where I in lust and joy
With a king's son my childish years did pass
In greater feast than Priam's sons of Troy;
Where each sweet place returns a taste full sour:
The large green courts where we were wont to hove
With eyes cast up unto the maidens' tower,
And easy sighs, such as folk draw in love;
The stately sales, the ladies bright of hue,
The dances short, long tales of great delight;
With words and looks that tigers could but rue,
Where each of us did plead the other's right;
The palm play, where, despoiled for the game,
With dazed eyes oft we by gleams of love
Have missed the ball and got sight of our dame,
To bait her eyes, which kept the leads above;
The graveled ground , with sleeves tied on the helm,
On foaming horses, with swords and friendly hearts,
With cheer, as though the one should overwhelm;
Where we have fought, and chased oft with darts,
With silver drops of the meads yet spread for ruth [pity],
In active games of nimbleness and strength,
Where we did strain, trailed by swarms of youth,
Our tender limbs that yet shot up in length;
The secret groves which oft we made resound
Of pleasant plaint and of our ladies' praise,
Recording soft what grace each one had found,
What hope of speed, what dread of long delays;
The wild forest, the clothed holt with green,
With reins avaled, and swift ybreathed horse,
With crys of hounds and merry blasts between,
Where we did chase the fearful hart aforce;
The void walls eke that harbored us each night,
Wherewith, alas, revive within my breast
The sweet accord; such sleeps as yet delight.
The pleasant dreams, the quiet bed of rest;
The secret thoughts imparted with such trust,
The wanton talk, the divers change of play,
The friendship sworn, each promise kept so just,
Wherewith we passed the winter nights away.
And with this thought the blood forsakes my face,
The tears berain my cheeks of deadly hue,
The which as soon as sobbing sighs, alas,
Unsupped have, thus I my plaint renew:
O place of bliss, renewer of my woes,
Give me accompt - where is my noble fere?
Whom in thy walls thou didst each night enclose,
To other lief, but unto me most dear!
Echo, alas, that doth my sorrow rue,
Returns thereto a hollow sound of plaint.
Thus, I, alone, where all my freedom grew,
In prison pine with bondage and restraint;
And with remembrance of the greater grief
To banish the less, I find my chief relief.




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