Kind Are Her Answers

By Thomas Campion 1567–1620 Thomas Campion
   Kind are her answers,
   But her performance keeps no day;
   Breaks time, as dancers
   From their own music when they stray:
   All her free favors
And smooth words wing my hopes in vain.
O did ever voice so sweet but only feign?
   Can true love yield such delay,
   Converting joy to pain?

   Lost is our freedom,
   When we submit to women so:
   Why do we need ’em,
   When in their best they work our woe?
   There is no wisdom
Can alter ends, by Fate prefixed.
O why is the good of man with evil mixed?
   Never were days yet called two,
   But one night went betwixt.

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Poet Thomas Campion 1567–1620

SCHOOL / PERIOD Renaissance

Subjects Love, Infatuation & Crushes, Unrequited Love, Break-ups & Vexed Love


Thomas Campion's importance for nondramatic literature of the English Renaissance lies in the exceptional intimacy of the musical-poetic connection in his work. While other poets and musicians talked about the union of the two arts, only Campion produced complete songs wholly of his own composition, and only he wrote lyric poetry of enduring literary value whose very construction is deeply etched with the poet's care for its . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Love, Infatuation & Crushes, Unrequited Love, Break-ups & Vexed Love

SCHOOL / PERIOD Renaissance

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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