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Poem of the week: Of a Poynted Diamond … by John Harington


A gift from Elizabeth I’s ‘saucy godson’ to his wife brings lusty and sparky life to the epigram form

Of a Poynted Diamond given by the Author to his Wife, at the Birth of his Eldest Son

Deare, I to thee this diamond commend,
In which a modell of thyself I send.
How just unto thy joints this circlet sitteth,
So just thy face and shape my fancy fitteth.
The touch will try this ring of purest gold,
My touch tries thee, as pure though softer mold.
That metal precious is, the stone is true,
As true, and then how much more precious, you.
The gem is cleare, and hath nor needes no foyle,
Thy face, nay more, thy fame is free from soil.
Youle deem this deere, because from me you have it,
I deem your faith more deer, because you gave it.
This pointed Diamond cuts glass and Steele,
Your love’s like force in my firme heart I feele.
But this, as all things else, time wastes with wearing,
Where you my jewels multiply with bearing.

Related: Poem of the Week: Soliloquy of the Spanish Cloister by Robert Browning

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