Oh, to vex me
Oh, to vex me, contraryes meet in one:
In constancy unnaturally hath begott
A constant habit; that when I would not
I change in vowes, and in devotione.
As humorous is my contritione
As my profane Love and as soone forgott:
As ridlingly distemper'd, cold and hott,
As praying, as mute; as infinite, as none.
I durst not view Heav'n yesterday; and today
In prayers, and flatt'ring speeches I court God:
Tomorrow I quake with true feare of his rod.
So my devout fitts come and go away,
Like a fantastique Ague: save that here
Those are my best dayes, when I shake with feare.
List of language codes
Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by (Edward) Benjamin Britten (1913 - 1976), "Oh, to vex me", op. 35 no. 4 (1945), published 1946 [high voice and piano], from The Holy Sonnets of John Donne, no. 4. [
text verified 1 time]
- by Geoffrey Burgon (b. 1941), "Oh, to vex me", 2001? [voice and piano], from Heavenly Things, no. 4. [
text not verified ]
- by Juliana Hall , "Oh, to vex me", 2013, first performed 2014 [tenor and piano], from The Holy Sonnets of John Donne - 9 Songs for Tenor and Piano, no. 4. [
text verified 1 time]
Available translations, adaptations, and transliterations (if applicable):
- FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , title unknown, copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2014-08-23 23:35:32
Line count: 14
Word count: 105
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- Emily Ezust
Oh, pour me contrarier, des contraires...
Language: French (Français) after the English
Oh, pour me contrarier, des contraires se rencontrent :
Dans la constance, anormalement a produit
Une habitude constante ; que quand je ne voudrais pas
Je change en serments, et en dévotions.
Aussi amusante est ma contrition
Que mon amour profane et aussi vite oubliée :
Aussi énigmatiquement de mauvaise humeur, froid et chaud,
Aussi en prières que muet : aussi infini que nul.
Je n'osais pas voir le ciel hier : et aujourd'hui
En prières, et en paroles flatteuses je courtise Dieu :
Demain je tremble avec une vraie peur de sa baguette.
Ainsi mes accès de piété vont et viennent,
Comme une fièvre vertigineuse : sauvez ce qui ici
Forment mes meilleurs jours, quand je tremble de peur.
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About the headline (FAQ)
- Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2011 by Guy Laffaille, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
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- a text in English by John Donne (1572 - 1631), appears in Holy Sonnets, no. 19
- This text was set to music by the following composer(s): Benjamin Britten, Geoffrey Burgon, Juliana Hall. Go to the text.
Text added to the website: 2011-07-05.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:27
Line count: 14
Word count: 120