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The Glasse Of Government

The Shed is great, and greater then the show,
Which seemes to be, betweene the good and bad :
For even as weedes, which fast by flowres do growe,
(Although they be with comely collors clad:)
Yet are they found, but seldom sweete of smell,
So vices brag, but vertue beares the Bell.
The prauncing steede, can seldome hold his flesh,
The hottest greyhound leaves the course at length:
The finest Silkes, do seeld continue freshe,
The fattest men, may fayle sometymes of strength:
Such deepe deceiptes, in faire pretence are founde;
That vices lurke, where vertue seemes t’abound.
A Spanish tricke it hath ben counted oft,
To seeme a thing, yet not desire to be:
Like humble bees, which fly all dayes aloft,
And tast the flowers, that fairest are to see:
But yet at even, when all thinges go to rest,
A foule cowe sharde, shall then content them best.
Weel yet such bees, bycause they make great noise,
And are withall, of sundry pleasaunt hewes:
Bee most esteemd, alwayes by common voyce,
And honourd more, then Bees of better thewes:
So men likewise, which beare the bravest Showe,
Are held for best, and crowched to full lowe.
But vertue she, which dwelles in secret thought,
Makes good the seede, what ever be the smell:
Though outward glose, sometimes do seeme but nought,
Yet inward stuffe, (of vertue) doth excell:
For like a stone, most worthy to esteeme,
It loves to be, much better then to seeme.
Phylautus heere, and Phylosarchus eke,
Did seeme at first, more forward then the rest:
But come to proofe, and nowe they be to seeke,
Their brethren nowe, perfourme their duty best:
Thus good From badde, appeares as day from night,
That one takes paine, that other loves delight.

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The Glasse Of Government - GEORGE GASCOIGNE