Feminists were psyched that I had armpit hair.
If Fire Learnt That It Had A Twin
If fire learnt that it had a twin,
would it weep or would it grin?
Would it rejoice that it had a friend?
Or would it's sibling become a fiend?
Would it burn with flames of hope?
Would it yearn for ways to cope?
Would it wish that life was for two?
If you were fire, what say you?
All That I Had Fought For
All that I had fought for
They'll Say That God Had Need Of Her..
They'll say that God had need of her
Before her time,
That angels sought her company
For beauty's sake
In mind or soul,
That stars will shine far brighter
In the night of all their dread
Now that she is dead at six years old,
And they must feel the cold
Of her departure all the more,
Like one whose ship has left the shore
For far off places,
They must have her face in mind
To keep as photograph,
In silver frame,
Until such time
That she and they
Are once again in arm's fond hold
And all the love returns
To cease the cold
And lonely days of aching grief.
That Which Had Been Different
That which had been different,
Is today alright.
With a jumping over in leaps and bounds,
What was found just yesterday...
To be safe and sound,
But now archaic.
And has rusted with decay.
Those afraid to live,
Because they feared their names...
Would be dropped in hot gossip,
Seek today to be the main event!
Overnight that which had been different,
Is today alright.
So many are over-excited with appetites to live,
They seem not able to be satisfied being mediocre.
A recognition they live to be the main event,
To breathe seek and reach accomplishments...
Has dawn on them as if they have begun to notice,
The Sun rising on the horizon for the first time.
Those Two Boys
WHEN Bill was a lad he was terribly bad.
He worried his parents a lot;
He'd lie and he'd swear and pull little girls' hair;
His boyhood was naught but a blot.
At play and in school he would fracture each rule— 5
In mischief from autumn to spring;
And the villagers knew when to manhood he grew
He would never amount to a thing.
When Jim was a child he was not very wild;
He was known as a good little boy;
He was honest and bright and the teacher's delight—
To his mother and father a joy.
All the neighbors were sure that his virtue'd endure,
That his life would be free of a spot;
They were certain that Jim had a great head on him 15
And that Jim would amount to a lot.
And Jim grew to manhood and honor and fame
And bears a good name;
While Bill is shut up in a dark prison cell—
You never can tell.
The Stars were Bright that Night
The stars were bright that night
The first time we meet
Kisses will be reserved
Arms will be waiting when we greet
Hearts will be pounding upon thine chest
Touching intimately as we entwine
Breaths softly caress each cheek
The wonder of the first sweet touch
The wonder of love
We give from the heart
Then lips meet for the first time
Attentively shy they brush
As they catch each other's breath
The shock of warmth that shivers to the bone
Sends the warmth of love right to the heart and soul
They stand for eternity lost in their world as people pass by
Softly he whisper ‘At last we meet, how are you my love and smiles in her eyes
Shyly she smiles as he leans to kiss her head and looks adoringly as she says ‘Yes'
Then hand in hand they explore the beach, and talk about their future as husband and wife
©Copyright Kaila George 2012
Wishing That It Had Never Happened
The fine young make-believes have already started
From the gated communities of Parkland they’ve
And young Italian girls take photographs of each other,
And I take photographs of them:
They are venal and cottage cheese-
They will go to college, or they’ll do as they please:
Like you, they might make love to me,
If they have to, but they will never fantasies over
These estuaries as I have had to:
How I’ve tried to compare you to the muses of
Baudelaire, the two strangers made sisters by his
The sick muse and the venal muse: I didn’t remember
That before you used to play soccer together,
But who as really in charge;
And if you’d won the season for our white tributary,
What then would have stopped your taught calved
Sorority from kissing under the bleachers,
And then to pass out like carnal wildflowers;
If it’s not what happened, it is at least what used to happen
When my mind awakened from happenstance
And began to matriculate toward the better causes of
Missing graduation- wishing that it had never happened.
On the way to Uniondale
One stormy Easter weekend
while I was driving on route sixty-two,
I found a beautiful girl
next to the road
just twenty kilometres from Uniondale
at the Barandas turn off,
the wind was swishing through her dark hair
and I heard it cry over the Kammanassie Mountain
and her thumb was out asking for a lift.
I brought the car to a standstill
and next to the road red allows were flowering
and she was dressed in a navy blue jacket,
and dark green pants
and I was worried that she was getting cold
and in the inside light of the BMW
she looked whitely pale
and smiled brilliantly
when we drove away
and when I asked where she was going
and she just answered
that she was coming along
which was kind of strange.
I still wanted to ask
what a lovely girl was doing alone
next to the road
when I smelled the apple blossoms
of her perfume
and she suddenly laughed shrilly
and the car door next to her
opened and closed and she was gone
and immediately I stopped the car
as I was sure that the woman
had jumped out.
Outside the car the road was empty
and while I walked up and down
without finding a sign of her
a police patrol car came along
and parked behind my car
and the constables were convinced
that I had given a lift to a ghost
and they called her Marie Charlotte Roux
and said that during Easter weekends
she wanders along that road
and to them my narrative
was an old well-known story.
[Reference: Accident on R62 where Marie Charlotte Roux passed away on the back seat of a Volkswagen Beetle, when her fiancé GM Pretorius lost control on 12 April 1968 in stormy weather. A year later he married and it is said that she started appearing from that time, but stopped after he was killed in a car accident in 1984, but who really knows? Maybe she will appear again.]
I thought that I had wavy hair
Until I shaved. Instead,
I find that I have straight hair
And a very wavy head.
I worked with a group of people who argued day and night - professors, officials, the Minister of Finance - but there were decisions that I had to make.
The people that really were important, that mattered, had a great foundation. I had no training. I had to learn while doing, and it was really difficult.
The potted plant
Parents were there that I had no boy friends
Husband is there; I avoid men’s company
Children are grown that I stopped flirting.
I have thus grown without a scandal.
As a plant, well pruned and potted.
So when I told my parents I wanted to go into acting because I was flunking out of my first year of junior college, they were relieved that I had picked something other than joining the army. But I can't imagine how they had high hopes for me.
One Last Walk
As I sit all alone in my concrete cell,
I think about how my life was hell
I grew up abused by my step-dad,
Dreams of better days were all that I had.
Till that day he hit my mom,
I could not take it, it was like a bomb.
I went to the closet and grabbed a gun,
I went to his room to have some fun.
All I wanted was to scare him straight,
I was tired of all the constant hate.
“I love my mom, ” I said to him,
“You’re not my father, I hate you, Jim.”
He got mad with this endless rage,
He said, “Drop the gun and back to your cage.”
He jumped at me and grabbed the gun,
I shot him and then all I could do was run.
The cops were called and I was found,
They took me in and hands were bound.
They put me on trial for murder first degree,
The jury can back and all agree.
That I must die for my crime,
I’m only a kid; I’ll never see my prime.
I’m all alone and I sit and cry,
For there is one last walk before I die.
A Return Of A Raw Memory
Destiny and Fate played with my memory-
Comin' round' to my back door-
Bringing back my days of yore;
All of my memories came flooding-
To back when Fate and Destiny became one...
Back to when you and i where like the endless blue sky...
A couple who shined as the Sun;
We were all that glittered as Gold...
We were all that mattered way back then-
Together as one we shown as the Sun...
Destiny and Fate are playing with this memory again;
Gone are the smiles that finally came 'round...
After our most bitter good-bye...
I was so over you-once we were through...
That i had nary a tear to cry;
But Destiny and Fate played with my memory-
They came 'round to my back door...
Knocking-they just kept knocking...
Bringing back all of our days of before;
Now the tears are coming...!
In remembrance of our once endless blue sky...
Storm clouds are forming over it...
And the Sun has disappeared upon high;
Gray clouds now cover the Firmament...
And my tears they fall as the rain...
Destiny and Fate have had their way-this day-
Leaving my heart and soul in endless pain;
Rosie (Dog Poem)
She howls like a wolf, morning, noon, and night,
Whenever her family, are not within her sight.
I always know when none of her family are about,
As she barks and howls, until she wears herself out.
When she became ill, her family began to worry,
So they took her off to the vets’ in quite a hurry.
From her neck, she had to have a lump removed,
And her condition, very steadily, began to improve.
For a few days, she sat feeling sorry for herself,
But, soon enough, she was back to her full health.
Her family were thrilled, that she had recovered,
As they think the world of her, and really love her.
She really loves her family, with all of her heart,
And, from them, she really hates being apart.
Their love and attention, she constantly craves.
She is well trained and so impeccably behaved.
She enjoys their companionship so very much.
Every so often, she will seek a reassuring touch.
I always know whenever the postman is around,
As, from next door, I hear a manic barking sound.
For her, playing ‘fetch’ with her ball is a real treat.
Upon retrieving it, she’ll dropp it down at your feet.
She’ll nudge the ball towards you, with her nose;
You throw it for her again, and away she will go.
Of many dogs, I’m scared, but with Rosie, I’m fine;
She has a gentle nature, and her eyes are really kind.
With Rosie, I don’t feel that I’m under any threat;
She’s one of the gentlest dogs, who I have ever met.
The Hogarth Experiment Part 6
It is strongly recommended you read Parts 1- 5 before reading this.
Professor Hogarth watched in horror,
at the returning insects
and what they were carrying.
He questioned himself
about what he had done.
His experiment had gone
well beyond what he dreamt.
It had created a horror unimaginable.
Somehow, they had to be stopped
before it went too far,
if it had not happened all ready.
He had to inform the authorities
and tell them everything.
The monstrous creations
had to be destroyed
or the world would be in peril.
Hogarth picked up the telephone,
telephoned the police station,
and explained to the Inspector in charge
everything that had happened.
He said he needed to talk
to someone from the Government,
as these monsters had to be destroyed.
The Inspector said that he would
report everything to the Army
as they were in charge of the situation.
They would be around to see him that night.
Hogarth replaced the telephone
and sat down to wait for the night to call.
Raymond Constantine sat beside the driver
and watched in horror at what was going on.
If the soldiers had not fired upon the swarm
they would have merely passed overhead.
Having killed one the release
of pheromone from its body
acted as an alarm
causing the rest to become more aggressive
and stinging anything near.
All they could do
was to wait and sit it out.
To venture outside of the vehicle
would be certain death.
Hogarth waited and waited.
Slowly the sun began to set.
He could see their silhouetted form
in the moon light returning to the nest.
The forms that they were carrying
made him shudder with despair.
He watched the time
as the hours ticked by.
He felt like telephoning back to the station
and asking where his visitors were.
A knock on the front door
answered his question.
He answered it and let
Captain Alex Walker and Raymond Constantine in.
They explained why they were late.
That they had been attacked and had to wait.
Hogarth explained to them, his experiment
and how he had suffered a heart attack three years previous.
Then how this year things had been growing larger
than normal including the wasps.
He could only guess that there was a nest
under his shed when it was destroyed
and that the experimental serum had leaked into it.
That it had taken three generations of wasps
before it altered their genetic structure
to make them grow as large as they have.
He could only speculate
that they could even grow larger
in future generation.
as Hogarth spoke.
His theory sounded wild and imaginative.
He would have taken it as a flight of fancy
had he not seen it for himself.
They had to be destroyed
and quickly before the new queens
had a chance of escaping
and starting new nests.
As they knew where the nest was located,
preparations had to be made
to eradicate completely.
Hogarth and everyone who lived within the house
would have to be evacuated
while this was done.
Evacuation would have to take place tonight.
At HQ Constantine explained
the situation to the chief of staffs
that had gathered.
The RAF would be able to shoot them
out of the skies
as they emerged from the nest in the morning.
On the ground, the Army
would gather flamethrowers
to ensure that the nest was burnt.
It would take a couple of days to prepare.
Over the next couple of days,
the Army gathered a unit of armoured flamethrowers
into the valley
and positioned them around
the opening of the nest.
As the nest would be made of paper,
it should burn quickly.
The only worry they would have
is those within the nest
would come out and swarm.
When this happened,
the flamethrowers would concentrate
on the swarm.
The RAF fighters would shoot
as many as they could down.
The operation would commence
the following morning.
To be concluded…
5 November 2007
The Valley of the Shadow
There were faces to remember in the Valley of the Shadow,
There were faces unregarded, there were faces to forget;
There were fires of grief and fear that are a few forgotten ashes,
There were sparks of recognition that are not forgotten yet.
For at first, with an amazed and overwhelming indignation
At a measureless malfeasance that obscurely willed it thus,
They were lost and unacquainted—till they found themselves in others,
Who had groped as they were groping where dim ways were perilous.
There were lives that were as dark as are the fears and intuitions
Of a child who knows himself and is alone with what he knows;
There were pensioners of dreams and there were debtors of illusions,
All to fail before the triumph of a weed that only grows.
There were thirsting heirs of golden sieves that held not wine or water,
And had no names in traffic or more value there than toys:
There were blighted sons of wonder in the Valley of the Shadow,
Where they suffered and still wondered why their wonder made no noise.
There were slaves who dragged the shackles of a precedent unbroken,
Demonstrating the fulfilment of unalterable schemes,
Which had been, before the cradle, Time’s inexorable tenants
Of what were now the dusty ruins of their father’s dreams.
There were these, and there were many who had stumbled up to manhood,
Where they saw too late the road they should have taken long ago:
There were thwarted clerks and fiddlers in the Valley of the Shadow,
The commemorative wreckage of what others did not know.
And there were daughters older than the mothers who had borne them,
Being older in their wisdom, which is older than the earth;
And they were going forward only farther into darkness,
Unrelieved as were the blasting obligations of their birth;
And among them, giving always what was not for their possession,
There were maidens, very quiet, with no quiet in their eyes;
There were daughters of the silence in the Valley of the Shadow,
Each an isolated item in the family sacrifice.
There were creepers among catacombs where dull regrets were torches,
Giving light enough to show them what was there upon the shelves—
Where there was more for them to see than pleasure would remember
Of something that had been alive and once had been themselves.
There were some who stirred the ruins with a solid imprecation,
While as many fled repentance for the promise of despair:
There were drinkers of wrong waters in the Valley of the Shadow,
And all the sparkling ways were dust that once had led them there.
There were some who knew the steps of Age incredibly beside them,
And his fingers upon shoulders that had never felt the wheel;
And their last of empty trophies was a gilded cup of nothing,
Which a contemplating vagabond would not have come to steal.
Long and often had they figured for a larger valuation,
But the size of their addition was the balance of a doubt:
There were gentlemen of leisure in the Valley of the Shadow,
Not allured by retrospection, disenchanted, and played out.
And among the dark endurances of unavowed reprisals
There were silent eyes of envy that saw little but saw well;
And over beauty’s aftermath of hazardous ambitions
There were tears for what had vanished as they vanished where they fell.
Not assured of what was theirs, and always hungry for the nameless,
There were some whose only passion was for Time who made them cold:
There were numerous fair women in the Valley of the Shadow,
Dreaming rather less of heaven than of hell when they were old.
Now and then, as if to scorn the common touch of common sorrow,
There were some who gave a few the distant pity of a smile;
And another cloaked a soul as with an ash of human embers,
Having covered thus a treasure that would last him for a while.
There were many by the presence of the many disaffected,
Whose exemption was included in the weight that others bore:
There were seekers after darkness in the Valley of the Shadow,
And they alone were there to find what they were looking for.
So they were, and so they are; and as they came are coming others,
And among them are the fearless and the meek and the unborn;
And a question that has held us heretofore without an answer
May abide without an answer until all have ceased to mourn.
For the children of the dark are more to name than are the wretched,
Or the broken, or the weary, or the baffled, or the shamed:
There are builders of new mansions in the Valley of the Shadow,
And among them are the dying and the blinded and the maimed.
The Letter of Cupid
Cupido, unto whos commandement
The gentil kinrede of goddes on hy
And peple infernal been obedient,
And the mortel folk seruen bisyly,
Of goddesse Sitheree sone oonly,
To alle tho that to our deitee
Been sogettes greetinges senden we.
In general, we wole that yee knowe
That ladies of honour and reverence
And other gentil wommen han ysowe
Swich seed of complainte in our audience
Of men that doon hem outrage and offense
That it our eres greeveth for to heere,
So pitous is th' effect of hir mateere;
And passing alle londes on this yle
That clept is Albioun they moost complaine;
They sayn that ther is croppe and roote of guile,
So can tho men dissimulen and faine
With standing dropes in hir eyen twaine,
Whan that hir herte feeleth no distresse.
To blinde wommen with hir doublenesse,
Hir wordes spoken been so sighingly
And with so pitous cheere and contenance,
That every wight that meeneth trewely
Deemeth that they in herte han swich greuance.
They sayn so importable is hir penance
That but hir lady list to shewe hem grace
They right anoon moot sterven in the place.
"A, lady min," they sayn, "I yow ensure,
Shewe me grace and I shal evere be,
Whiles my lif may lasten and endure,
To yow as humble in every degree
As possible is, and keepe al thing secree
As that yourselven liketh that I do;
And elles moot min herte breste on two."
Ful hard is it to knowe a mannes herte,
For outward may no man the truthe deeme
Whan word out of his mouth may ther noon sterte,
But it sholde any wight by reson queeme
So is it seid of herte, it wolde seeme.
O faithful womman, ful of Innocence,
Thou art betrayed by fals apparence!
By procees wommen, meved of pitee,
Weening al thing were as that tho men saye,
Granten hem grace of hir benignitee,
For they nat sholden for hir sake deye,
And with good herte sette hem in the weye
Of blisful love -- keepe it if they konne!
Thus other while been the wommen wonne.
And whan the man the pot hath by the stele,
And fully of her hath possessioun,
With that womman he keepeth nat to dele
After, if he may finden in the toun
Any womman his blind affeccion
On to bestowe -- foule moot he preeve!
A man for al his ooth is hard to leeve.
And for that every fals man hath a make,
As unto every wight is light to knowe,
Whan this Traitour the womman hath forsake
He faste him speedeth unto his felowe;
Til he be ther his herte is on a lowe,
His fals deceit ne may him nat suffise,
But of his treson telleth al the wise.
Is this a fair avaunt? Is this honour
A man himself to accuse and diffame?
Now is it good confesse him a traitour,
And bringe a womman to a sclaundrous name,
And telle how he hir body hath doon shame;
No worship may he thus to him conquere
But ful greet repreef unto him and here.
To her nay yit was it no repreef,
For al for pitee was it that shee wroghte;
But he that breewed hath al this mescheef,
That spak so fair and falsly inward thoghte --
His be the shame as it by reson oghte;
And unto her thank perpetuel
That in a neede helpe can so wel.
Althogh that men by sleighte and sotiltee
A sely, simple, and ignorant womman
Betraye is no wonder, syn the Citee
Of Troie, as that the storie telle can,
Betrayed was thurgh the deceit of man,
And set afir and al doun overthrowe,
And finally destroyed as men knowe.
Betrayen men nat Remes grete and kinges?
What wight is, that can shape a remedie
Againes false and hid purposed thinges?
Who can the craft tho castes to espye,
But man whos wil ay reedy is t' applye
To thing that souneth into hy falshede?
Wommen, be waar of mennes sleighte, I rede;
And ferthermore han the men in usage,
That wheras they nat likly been to speede
Swiche as they been with a double visage,
They procuren for to pursue hir neede;
He prayeth him in his cause proceede
And largely him quiteth his travaille;
Smal witen wommen how men hem assaille.
To his felawe another wreche sayth,
"Thou fishest fair! Shee that hath thee fired
Is fals and inconstant and hath no faith.
Shee for the rode of folk is so desired
And as an hors fro day to day is hired,
That whan thou twinnest from hir compaignie
Another comth and blered is thin eye.
Now prike on faste and ride thy journeye;
Whil thou art ther, shee behinde thy bak
So liberal is shee can no wight withsaye,
But quikly of another take a snak,
For so the wommen faren al the pak.
Whoso hem trusteth hanged moot he be!
Ay they desiren chaunge and noveltee.
Wherof procedeth this but of envye?
For he himself here ne winne may,
Repreef of her he speketh and villenye
As mannes labbing tonge is wont alway.
Thus sundry men ful often make assay
For to disturbe folk in sundry wise
For they may nat acheven hir emprise.
Ful many a man eek wolde for no good
That hath in love spent his time and used
Men wiste his lady his axing withstood
And that he were of his lady refused,
Or waast and vain were al that he had mused
Wherfore he can no bettre remedie
But on his lady shapeth him to lie:
"Every womman," he sayth," is light to gete;
Can noon sayn `nay' if shee be wel ysoght.
Whoso may leiser han with hir to trete
Of his purpos ne shal he faille noght."
But on madding he be so deepe broght
That he shende al with open hoomlynesse
That loven wommen nat as that I gesse.
To sclaundre wommen thus what may profite
To gentils namly that hem armen sholde
And in deffense of wommen hem delite
As that the ordre of gentillesse wolde
If that a man list gentil to be holde
Al moot he flee that is to it contrary
A sclaundring tonge is therto Aduersary.
A foul vice is of tonge to be light
For whoso mochil clappeth gabbeth ofte
The tonge of man so swift is and so wight
That whan it is araised up on lofte
Reson it sueth so slowly and softe
That it him nevere overtake may.
Lord, so the men been trusty at assay!
Al be it that men finde o womman nice,
Inconstant, rechelees, or variable
Deinous, or proud, fulfilled of malice,
Withoute faith or love and deceivable,
Sly, queinte and fals, in al unthrift coupable,
Wikked and feers and ful of crueltee --
It folweth nat swiche alle wommen be.
Whan that the hy god angels fourmed hadde
Among hem alle whether ther was noon
That founden was malicious and badde?
Yis, men wel knowen ther was many oon
That for hir pride fel from hevene anoon.
Shal man therfore alle angels proude name?
Nay, he that that susteneth is to blame.
Of twelue apostles oon a traitour was;
The remanaunt yit goode were and true.
Thanne, if it happe men finden par cas
O womman fals, swich is good for t' eschewe
And deeme nat that they been alle untrue.
I see wel mennes owne falsenesse
Hem causeth wommen for to truste lesse.
O, every man oghte han an herte tendre
Unto womman and deeme her honurable,
Whether his shap be either thikke or sclendre
Or he be badde or good; this is no fable.
Every man woot that wit hath resonable
That of a womman he descended is.
Than is it shame speke of hir amis.
A wikked tree good fruit may noon foorth bringe
For swich the fruit is, as that is the tree.
Take heede of whom thou took thy beginninge
Lat thy moder be mirour unto thee;
Honoure her if thou wilt honoured be.
Dispise thou nat her in no maneere
Lest that therthurgh thy wikkednesse appeere.
An old proverbe seid is in English
Men sayn that brid or foul is dishonest,
What so it be, and holden ful cherlish
That wont is to deffoule his owne nest.
Men to saye of wommen wel it is best
And nat for to despise hem ne deprave
If that hem list hir honour keepe and save.
Ladies eek complainen hem on clerkes
That they han maad bookes of hir deffame
In whiche they lakken wommennes werkes
And speken of hem greet repreef and shame
And causelees hem yeue a wikked name.
Thus they dispised been on every side
And sclaundred and belowen on ful wide.
Tho wikked bookes maken mencion
How they betrayeden in special
Adam, Dauid, Sampson, and Salomon
And many oon mo. Who may rehercen al
The tresoun that they have doon and shal?
Who may hir hy malice comprehende?
Nat the world, clerkes sayn; it hath noon ende.
Ovide in his book called Remedie
Of Love greet repreef of wommen writeth,
Wherin I trowe he dide greet folie
And every wight that in swich cas deliteth;
A clerkes custume is whan he enditeth
Of wommen, be it prose rym or vers,
Sayn they be wikke, al knowe he the revers.
And that book scolers lerne in hir childhede
For they of wommen be waar sholde in age,
And for to love hem evere been in drede,
Syn to deceive is set al hir corage.
They sayn peril to caste is avantage;
Namely swich as men han in be trapped,
For many a man by wommen han mishapped
No charge what so that the Clerkes sayn
Of al hir wrong wryting do we no cure
Al hir labour and travaille is in vain
For betwixt us and my lady Nature
Shal nat be suffred whil the world may dure
Clerkes by hir outrageous tirannye
Thus upon wommen kithen hir maistrye
Whilom ful many of hem were in our chaine
Tied and -- lo! -- now what for unweeldy age
And for unlust may nat to love attaine
And sayn that love is but verray dotage;
Thus for that they hemself lakken corage
They folk exciten by hir wikked sawes
For to rebelle again us and our lawes.
But maugree hem that blamen wommen moost
Swich is the force of oure impressioun
That sodeinly we felle can hir boost
And al hir wrong imaginacioun
It shal nat been in hir elleccioun
The foulest slutte in al a town refuse
If that us list, for al that they can muse.
But her in herte as brenningly desire
As thogh shee were a duchesse or a queene
So can we mennes hertes sette on fire
And as us list hem sende joye and teene
They that to wommen been ywhet so keene
Our sharpe strokes how sore they smite
Shul feele and knowe and how they kerve and bite.
Pardee, this greet clerk, this sotil Ovide
And many another han deceived be
Of wommen, as it knowen is ful wide.
What no men more and that is greet daintee
So excellent a clerk as that was he
And other mo that koude so wel preche
Betrapped wern for aght they koude teche.
And trusteth wel that it is no meruaille
For wommen knewen plainly hir entente
They wiste how sotilly they koude assaille
Hem and what falshode in herte they mente
And tho Clerkes they in hir daunger hente
With o venym another was destroyed
And thus the Clerkes often were anoyed
Thise ladies ne gentils nathelees
Weren nat they that wroghten in this wise
But swiche filthes that wern vertulees
They quitten thus thise olde Clerkes wise
To clerkes forthy lesse may suffise
Than to deprave wommen generally
For honour shuln they gete noon therby.
If that tho men that lovers hem pretende
To wommen weren faithful, goode, and true,
And dredden hem to deceive and offende,
Wommen to love hem wolde nat eschewe;
But every day hath man an herte neewe
It upon oon abide can no while.
What force is it swich oon for to beguile?
Men beren eek the wommen up on honde
That lightly and withouten any paine
They wonne been; they can no wight withstonde
That his disese list to hem complaine.
They been so freel they mowe hem nat restraine.
But whoso liketh may hem lightly have
So been hir hertes esy in to grave.
To Maistir Iohn de Meun as I suppose
Than it was a lewde occupacioun
In makinge of the Romance of the Rose
So many a sly imaginacioun
And perils for to rollen up and doun --
So long procees, so many a sly cautele,
For to deceive a sely damoisele!
Nat can we seen, ne in our wit comprehende
That art and paine and sotiltee may faille
For to conquere and soone make an ende,
Whan man a feeble place shal assaille,
And soone also to venquishe a Bataille
Of which no wight dar make resistence,
Ne herte hath noon to stonden at deffense.
Than moot it folwen of necessitee
Syn art asketh so greet engin and paine
A womman to deceive, what shee be,
Of constance they been nat so bareine
As that some of tho sotil clerkes feine,
But they been as that wommen oghten be:
Sad, constaunt, and fulfilled of pitee
How freendly was Medea to Jasoun
In the conquering of the flees of gold!
How falsly quitte he her affeccion,
By whom victorie he gat as he hath wold.
How may this man for shame be so bold
To falsen her that from deeth and shame
Him kepte and gat him so greet prys and name?
Of Troie also the traitour Eneas
The feithlees man how hath he him forswore
To Dido that Queene of Cartage was
That him releeved of his greeves sore.
What gentillesse mighte shee do more
Than shee with herte unfeined to him kidde?
And what mescheef to her of it betidde!
In our Legende of Martyrs may men finde
Whoso that liketh therin for to rede
That ooth noon ne beheste may men binde;
Of repreef ne of shame han they no drede;
In herte of man conceites true arn dede;
The soile is naght; ther may no trouthe growe.
To womman is hir vice nat unknowe
Clerkes sayn also ther is no malice
Unto wommannes crabbed wikkednesse.
O womman, how shalt thou thyself chevice,
Syn men of thee so mochil harm witnesse?
Yee, strah! Do foorth! Take noon hevynesse!
Keepe thin owne, what men clappe or crake
And some of hem shuln smerte, I undertake.
Malice of wommen what is it to drede?
They slee no men, destroyen no citees,
They nat oppressen folk, ne overlede,
Betraye Empires, Remes, ne Duchees,
Ne men bereve hir landes ne hir mees,
Folk enpoisone or houses sette on fire,
Ne fals contractes maken for noon hire.
Trust parfit love and enteer charitee,
Fervent wil and entalented corage.
To thewes goode as it sit wel to be
Han wommen ay of custume and usage;
And wel they can a mannes ire assuage
With softe wordes discreet and benigne
What they been inward sheweth owtward signe.
Wommannes herte to no crueltee
Enclined is; but they been charitable
Pitous, devout, ful of humilitee,
Shamefast, debonair, and amiable,
Dreedful, and of hir wordes mesurable;
What womman thise hath nat par aventure
Folweth nothing the way of hir nature.
Men sayn our firste moder nathelees
Mede al mankinde leese his libertee
And naked it of joye doutelees,
For goddes heeste disobeyed shee
Whan shee presumed to ete of the tree
Which god forbad that shee nat ete of sholde,
And nad the feend been, no more she wolde.
Th' envious swelling that the feend our fo
Had unto man in herte for his welthe
Sente a serpent and made her to go
To deceive Eve; and thus was mannes welthe
Bereft him by the feend right in a stelthe,
The womman nat knowing of the deceit.
God woot ful fer was it from hir conceit!
Wherfor we sayn this good womman Eve
Our fadir Adam ne deceived noght
Ther may no man for a deceit it preeve
Proprely, but if that shee in hir thoght
Had it compassed first or it was wroght;
And for swich was nat hir impressioun,
Men calle it may no deceit by resoun
No wight deceiveth but he it purpose
The feend this deceit caste and nothing shee.
Than is it wrong for to deeme or suppose
That shee sholde of that guilt the cause be.
Witeth the feend and his be the maugree,
And for excused have hir innocence,
Sauf oonly that shee brak obedience.
Touchinge which, ful fewe men ther been --
Unnethes any dar we saufly saye --
Fro day to day as men mowe wel seen,
But that the heeste of god they disobeye.
This have in minde, sires, we yow preye
If that yee be discreet and resonable
Yee wole hir holde the more excusable
And wher men sayn in man is stedfastnesse
And womman is of hir corage unstable,
Who may of Adam bere swich witnesse?
Telleth on this: was he nat changeable?
They bothe weren in a cas semblable,
Sauf willingly the feend deceived Eve.
So dide shee nat Adam, by your leeve!
Yit was that sinne happy to mankinde:
The feend deceived was for al his sleighte.
For aght he koude him in his sleightes winde,
God to discharge mankinde of the weighte
Of his trespas cam doun from hevenes heighte,
And flesh and blood he took of a virgine,
And souffred deeth man to delivere of pine.
And god fro whom ther may nothing hid be,
If he in womman knowe had swich malice,
As men of hem recorde in generaltee
Of our lady of lif reparatrice
Nolde han be born; but for that shee of vice
Was voide and of al vertu wel he wiste
Endowed of her be born him liste.
Her heped vertu hath swich excellence
That al too weyk is mannes facultee
To declare it; and therfore in suspense
Her due laude put moot needes be.
But this we witen verraily: that shee,
Next god, the best freend is that to man longeth.
The keye of mercy by hir girdil hongeth.
And of mercy hath every wight swich neede
That, cessing it, farwel the joye of man!
Of hir power it is to taken heede;
Shee mercy may, wole, and purchace can;
Displese her nat! Honureth that womman
And other wommen alle for hir sake;
And but yee do, your sorwe shal awake.
Thou precious gemme, martyr margarete,
Of thy blood dreddest noon effusioun;
Thy martyrdom ne may we nat foryete.
O constant womman, in thy passioun
Overcam the feendes temptacioun,
And many a wight converted thy doctrine
Unto the feith of god, holy virgine.
But understondeth: we commende hir noght
By encheson of hir virginitee
Trusteth right wel it cam nat in our thoght
For ay we werreie again chastitee
And evere shal; but this leeveth wel yee:
Her loving herte and constant to hir lay
Drive out of remembrance we nat may.
In any book also wher can yee finde
That of the wirkes or the deeth or lif
Of Jhesu spekth or maketh any minde
That wommen him forsook for wo or strif
Wher was ther any wight so ententif
Abouten him as wommen pardee noon
Th' apostles him forsooken everichoon
Wommen forsook him noght for al the feith
Of holy chirche in womman lefte oonly
This is no lees for thus holy writ sayth
Looke and yee shuln so finde it hardily
And therfore it may preeved be therby
That in womman regneth al the constaunce
And in man is al chaunge and variaunce
Now holdeth this for ferme and for no lye
That this treewe and just commendacioun
Of wommen is nat told for flaterye
Ne to cause hem pride or elacioun
But oonly -- lo! -- for this entencioun
To yeue hem corage of perseverance
In vertu and hir honur to enhaunce
The more vertu, the lasse is the pride;
Vertu so noble is and worthy in kinde
That vice and shee may nat in feere abide
Shee putteth vice cleene out of minde
Shee fleeth from him shee leveth him behinde
O womman that of vertu art hostesse,
Greet is thin honur and thy worthynesse.
Than thus we wolen conclude and deffine:
We yow commaunde our Ministres echoon
That reedy been to our hestes encline
That of tho men untrue, our rebel foon,
Yee do punishement and that anoon
Voide hem our Court and banishe hem for evere
So that therinne they ne come nevere.
Fulfilled be it! Cessing al delay,
Looke ther be noon excusacion.
Writen in th' air the lusty monthe of May
In our Paleys wher many a milion
Of lovers true han habitacion
The yeer of grace joyeful and jocounde
One thousand four hundred and secounde.
Minette, Once I Had Been Blessed
Minette, once with your company
and love I was blessed,
sweetly smiling, still your face I see
even the book with flowers pressed
still reminds me
of how things between us had been,
about life’s frailty
and you were like an angel that I had seen
beyond all words beautiful and fair
with eyes the colour of a pure sky,
with blonde golden soft hair
and even while the years pass by,
even in death you remain ever young
and sometimes my feelings for you are still strong.