A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning

Still life rose

As virtuous men pass mildly away,
   And whisper to their souls to go,
Whilst some of their sad friends do say
   The breath goes now, and some say, No:Still life
So let us melt, and make no noise,
   No tear-floods, nor sigh-tempests move;
‘Twere profanation of our joys
   To tell the laity our love.
Moving of th’ earth brings harms and fears,
   Men reckon what it did, and meant;
But trepidation of the spheres,
   Though greater far, is innocent.
Dull sublunary lovers’ love
   (Whose soul is sense) cannot admit
Absence, because it doth remove
   Those things which elemented it.
Still life mantlepiece
But we by a love so much refined,
   That our selves know not what it is,
Inter-assured of the mind,
   Care less, eyes, lips, and hands to miss.
Our two souls therefore, which are one,
   Though I must go, endure not yet
A breach, but an expansion,
   Like gold to airy thinness beat.
Study DoorIf they be two, they are two so
   As stiff twin compasses are two;
Thy soul, the fixed foot, makes no show
   To move, but doth, if the other do.
And though it in the center sit,
   Yet when the other far doth roam,
It leans and hearkens after it,
   And grows erect, as that comes home.
Such wilt thou be to me, who must,
   Like th’ other foot, obliquely run;
Thy firmness makes my circle just,
   And makes me end where I begun.

John Donne


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8 comments on “A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning

  1. M M Bennetts says:

    John Donne was one of MM’s favourite poets – one of quite a few – with a few pictures of the study where she used to write… x

  2. Well done. Celebration shall now trump mourning.

  3. Simply beautiful tribute on this anniversary. Thank you so much for posting.

  4. Ken Hives says:

    Still miss you, wish I could have known you better. RIP xx

  5. PondersUpon says:

    Beautiful. I will always remember her love of poetry, and this is such a beautiful post. Thank you xxx

  6. J.P. Lane says:

    Thanks for posting this beautiful tribute.

  7. Mignon Fahr says:

    Yes, this is a tribute and remonstrance Bennetts would approve. I think she might even have posted it. Thank you!

  8. Athina Burges says:

    Beautiful… Thank you. I miss M.

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