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A Song in praise of a single life

To the Tune of the Ghosts hearse.
SOme do write of bloudy warres,
Some shew the sundry iarres,
twixt men, through enuy raised:
Some in praise of Princes write,
Some set their whole delight
to heare faire beauty blazed.
Some other persons are moued,
for to praise where they are loued:
And let louers praise beauty as they will;
Otherwayes I am intended:
True loue is little regarded,
And oftentymes goes vnrewarded,
then to auoid all strife,
I’ll resolue to lead a single life,
Whereby the heart is not offended.
O what suit and seruice too,
Is vsed by them that woo:
and all to purchase fauor,
O what griefe in heart and mind,
What sorrow we do find,
through womans fond behauiour:
Subiect to suffer each lowre,
and speeches both sharpe and sowre,
And labour, loue & cost,
Perchance its but all lost,
and no way to be amended:
And so to purchase pleasure,
And after repent at leysure,
Then to auoid all strife, &c.
To a man in wedded state
Doth happen much debate,
except Gods speciall fauour:
If his wife be proudly bent,
Or secretly consent,
to any lewd behauiour:
If she be slothful or idle,
Or such as her tongue cannot bridle,
Oh then well were he,
If death his bane would be,
No sorrow else can be amended:
For looke how long he were liuing,
Euermore would he be grieuing.
Then to auoid all strife, &c.
Married folke we often heare,
Euen through their children deare:
haue many causes of sorrowes,
If disobedient they be found,
Or false in any ground,
by their vnlawfull borrowes,
To see such wicked fellows,
shamefully come to the Gallowes.
Whom Parents with great care,
Nourished with dainty fare,
from their cradle truly tended,
When as the mother before them,
doth curse the day that ere she bore them.
Then to auoid all strife, &c.
Do we then behold and see,
When men and wiues agree,
and liue and loue together:
Where the Lord hath sent them eke:
Faire children mild and meeke,
like flowers in Summers weather
How greatly are they grieued,
And will not by ioy be relieued,
if that death doth call,
Either wife or children small,
whom their vertues do commend,
Their losses whom they thus loued,
from their hearts cannot be moued
Then to auoid all strife, &c.
Who being in that happy state,
Would work himself such hate,
his fancy for to follow:
Or, liuing here deuoid of strife,
Would take to him a wife:
for to procure his sorrow:
With carking and with caring,
Euermore must be sparing:
Were he not worse then mad,
being merry wold be sad:
Were he to be commended,
That ere would seeke such pleasure,
where griefe is all his treasure.
Then to auoid all strife, &c.

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A Song in praise of a single life - THOMAS DELONEY