Caelica 22: [I, with whose colours Myra dress’d her head]

By Baron Brooke Fulke Greville 1554–1628 Fulke Greville
I, with whose colours Myra dress’d her head,
    I, that ware posies of her own hand-making,
I, that mine own name in the chimneys read
    By Myra finely wrought ere I was waking:
         Must I look on, in hope time coming may
         With change bring back my turn again to play?

I, that on Sunday at the church-stile found
    A garland sweet, with true-love knots in flowers,
Which I to wear about mine arm was bound,
    That each of us might know that all was ours:
         Must I now lead an idle life in wishes,
         And follow Cupid for his loaves and fishes?

I, that did wear the ring her mother left,
    I, for whose love she gloried to be blamed,
I, with whose eyes her eyes committed theft,
    I, who did make her blush when I was named:
         Must I lose ring, flowers, blush, theft, and go naked,
         Watching with sighs till dead love be awaked?

I, that, when drowsy Argus fell asleep,
    Like jealousy o’erwatched with desire,
Was even warned modesty to keep,
    While her breath, speaking, kindled Nature’s fire:
         Must I look on a-cold, while others warm them?
         Do Vulcan’s brothers in such fine nets arm them?

Was it for this that I might Myra see
    Washing the water with her beauties white?
Yet would she never write her love to me.
    Thinks wit of change, while thoughts are in delight?
         Mad girls must safely love as they may leave;
         No man can print a kiss: lines may deceive.

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Baron Brooke Fulke Greville 1554–1628

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD 17th Century

Subjects Relationships, Love, Romantic Love, Unrequited Love

Poetic Terms Sonnet, Rhymed Stanza

Baron Brooke Fulke  Greville

Biography

Fulke Greville, first Lord Brooke, survived most of his contemporaries. His active literary life of almost fifty years (the late 1570s to the 1620s) makes him the principal courtly writer of the Elizabethan and Jacobean eras (apart from his short-lived friend Sir Philip Sidney). Although some attention has been paid to him as a writer of short poems, the main interest in Greville has been focused not on his closet dramas Alaham . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Relationships, Love, Romantic Love, Unrequited Love

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD 17th Century

Poetic Terms Sonnet, Rhymed Stanza

Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.