Song from Arcadia
Sir Philip Sidney, The Countess of Pembroke's Arcadia, 2nd edn. Ed. H. Sanford. (J. Windet for W. Ponsonbie, 1593.) STC 22540.
2By just exchange one for the other given:
3I hold his dear, and mine he cannot miss;
4There never was a bargain better driven.
5His heart in me keeps me and him in one;
6My heart in him his thoughts and senses guides:
7He loves my heart, for once it was his own;
8I cherish his because in me it bides.
9His heart his wound received from my sight;
10My heart was wounded with his wounded heart;
11For as from me on him his hurt did light,
12So still, methought, in me his hurt did smart:
13Both equal hurt, in this change sought our bliss,
14My true love hath my heart and I have his.
1] This sonnet was adapted from a famous ten-line song preserved in Puttenham's Art of English Poesy, 1589, but not found elsewhere among Sidney's poems. The sonnet occurs in Book III of The Countess of Pembroke's Arcadia, which was begun in 1580, and was published in incomplete form in 1590, and in a revised form in 1593. The Arcadia is a long macaronic romance (prose mixed with poetry). Back to Line
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RPO poem Editors:
F. D. Hoeniger