Seven Songs

Song Cycle by John Linton Gardner (1917 - 2011)

Word count: 743

1. Hark, hark! the lark [sung text not yet checked]

Hearke, hearke, the Larke at Heavens gate sings,
     and Phœbus gins arise,
[His Steeds to water at those Springs
     on chalic'd Flowres that lyes:]1
And winking Mary-buds begin to ope their Golden eyes
With every thing that pretty is, my Lady sweet arise:
     Arise arise.

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Confirmed with Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies. Published according to the True Originall Copies. London. Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed. Blount. 1623 (Facsimile from the First Folio Edition, London: Chatto and Windus, Piccadilly. 1876), page 377 of the Tragedies.

Note: The poem is Cloten's song in act II, scene 3.

1 omitted by Johnson.

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Peter Rastl [Guest Editor]

2. Crabbed age and youth [sung text not yet checked]

Crabbed age and youth cannot live together:
Youth is full of [pleasance]1, age is full of care;
Youth like summer morn, age like winter weather;
Youth like summer brave, age like winter bare.
Youth is full of sport, age's breath is short;
Youth is nimble, age is lame;
Youth is hot and bold, age is weak and cold;
Youth is wild, and age is tame.
Age, I do abhor thee; youth, I do adore thee;
O, my love, my love is young!
Age, I do defy thee: O, sweet shepherd, hie thee,
For methinks thou stay'st too long.

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1 White: "pleasure"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. Gather ye rosebuds while ye may [sung text not yet checked]

Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
Old Time is still a-flying:
And [this]1 same flower that smiles today
Tomorrow will be dying.

[The]2 glorious lamp of heaven, the Sun,
The higher he's a-getting
The sooner will his race be run,
And nearer he's to setting.

That age is best which is the first,
When youth and blood are warmer;
[But being spent, the worse, and worst
Times, still succeed the former. ]3

Then be not coy, but use your time;
And while ye may, go marry:
For having lost but once your prime,
You may forever tarry.

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • SPA Spanish (Español) (Alfredo García) , "A las vírgenes, para que aprovechen el tiempo", copyright © 2004, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

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1 Lawes: "that"
2 Dring: "That"
3 Lawes: "Expect not the last and worst, / Time still succeeds the former."

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

4. Fear no more the heat o' the sun [sung text not yet checked]

GUIDERIUS
Fear no more the heat o' the sun,
Nor the furious winter's rages;
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta'en thy wages:
Golden lads and girls all must,
[As chimney-sweepers,]1 come to dust.

ARVIRAGUS
Fear no more the frown o' the great;
Thou art past the tyrant's stroke;
Care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
The sceptre, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.

GUIDERIUS
Fear no more the lightning flash,

ARVIRAGUS
Nor the all-dreaded thunder-stone;

GUIDERIUS
Fear not slander, censure rash;

ARVIRAGUS
Thou hast finish'd joy and moan:

GUIDERIUS, ARVIRAGUS
[All]2 lovers young, all lovers must
Consign to thee, and come to dust.

GUIDERIUS
No exorciser harm thee!

ARVIRAGUS
Nor no witchcraft charm thee!

GUIDERIUS
Ghost unlaid forbear thee!

ARVIRAGUS
Nothing ill come near thee!

GUIDERIUS, ARVIRAGUS
Quiet consummation have;
And renowned be thy grave!

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FIN Finnish (Suomi) (Paavo Cajander)
  • FRE French (Français) (François-Victor Hugo) , no title
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • SPA Spanish (Español) (José Miguel Llata) , "Canto fúnebre para fídula", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission [an adaptation]

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1 Pierson: "Follow thee, and"
2 ommitted by Pierson.

Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

5. Under the greenwood tree [sung text not yet checked]

Under the greenwood tree
Who loves to lie with me,
And [turn]1 [his]2 merry note
Unto the sweet bird's throat,
Come hither, come hither, come hither:
Here shall he see
No enemy
But winter and rough weather.

Who doth ambition shun,
And loves to live i' the sun,
Seeking the food he eats,
And pleas'd with what he gets,
Come hither, come hither, come hither:
Here shall he see
No enemy
But winter and rough weather.

If it do come to pass
That any man turn ass,
Leaving his wealth and ease,
A stubborn will to please,
Ducdame, ducdame, ducdame:
Here shall he see
Gross fools as he,
An if he will come to me.
Under the greenwood tree
Who loves to lie with me.

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) (Mark de Vries) , "Onder het loofdak", copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FIN Finnish (Suomi) (Paavo Cajander)
  • FRE French (Français) (François Pierre Guillaume Guizot)
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Julia Hamann) , "Unterm Baum im Maienwald", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

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1 Quilter: "tune"
2 Korngold: "the"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

6. It is not growing like a tree [sung text not yet checked]

It is not growing like a tree
In bulk, doth make man better be;
Or standing long an oak, three-hundred year,
To fall a log at last, dry, bald and sere.
A lily of a day,
Is fairer far in May,
Although it droop and die that night,
It was the plant and flow'r of light.
In small proportions we just beauties see;
And in short measures, life may perfect be.

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

7. How happy is he born and taught [sung text not yet checked]

How happy is he born and taught	 
That serveth not another's will;	 
Whose armour is his honest thought	 
And simple truth his utmost skill;	 
  
Whose passions not his masters are;
Whose soul is still prepared for death,	 
Not tied unto the world with care	 
Of public fame, or private breath;	 
  
Who envies none that chance doth raise,	 
Or vice; who never understood
How deepest wounds are given by praise,	 
Nor rules of state, but rules of good;	 
  
Who hath his life from rumours freed,	 
Whose conscience is his strong retreat;	 
Whose state can neither flatterers feed,
Nor ruin make accusers great;	 
  
Who God doth late and early pray	 
More of His grace than gifts to lend;	 
And entertains the harmless day	 
With a well-chosen book or friend;
  
-- This man is freed from servile bands	 
Of hope to rise, or fear to fall;	 
Lord of himself, though not of lands;	 
And having nothing, yet hath all.

Authorship

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]