The Abraham Cowley Text and Image Archive

The rich Rival
from The Mistress, Poems (1656; editor's copy)

THey say you're angry, and rant mightilie,
   Because I love the same as you;
   Alas! you're very rich; 'tis true;
But prithee Fool, what's that to Love and Mee?
   You'have Land and Money, let that serve;
And know you'have more by that than you deserve.
When next I see my fair One, she shall know,
   How worthless thou art of her bed;
   And wretch, I'll strike thee dumb and dead,
With noble verse not understood by you;  10
   Whilst thy sole Rhetorick shall be
Joynture, and Jewels, and Our Friends agree.
Pox o' your friends, that dote and Domineere:
   Lovers are better Friends than they:
   Let's those in other things obey;
The Fates, and Stars, and Gods must govern here.
   Vain names of Blood! in Love let none
Advise with any Blood, but with their owne.
'Tis that which bids me this bright Maid adore;
   No other thought has had access!  20
   Did she now beg I'd love no less,
And were she'an Empress, I should love no more;
   Were she as just and true to Me,
Ah, simple soul, what would become of Thee!

This text normalized in the same way as Cowley's "Hymn to Light."
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