31 July 2010

The Quiet Life

I have been watching the series 'The Tudors'. Although it is greatly 'dramatised' for television and thus some what innacurate, however it has been an entertaining series and the props and costumes alone are amazing.

This sonnet was quoted in the 4th series by the Earl of Surrey, Henry Howard. He was responsible for bringing the sonnet to Britain from Italy and translated many works into English. This is one work that I think is just beautiful.

My friend, the things that do attain
The happy life be these, I find:
The riches left, not got with pain,
The fruitful ground; the quiet mind;

The equal friend; no grudge, no strife;
No charge of rule nor governance;
Without disease the healthy life;
The household of continuance;

The mean diet, no dainty fare;
True wisdom joined with simpleness;
The night discharged of all care,
Where wine the wit may not oppress;

The faithful wife, without debate;
Such sleeps as may beguile the night:
Content thyself with thine estate,
Neither wish death, nor fear his might.

No comments: