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Contentment walks
The sunny glade, and feels an iaward bliss
Spring o'er his mind, beyond the power of kings
To purchase.





My minde to me a kingdome is;

Such perfect joy therein I finde As farre exceeds all earthly blisse,

That God or Nature hath assignde: Though much I want, that most would have, Yet still my mind forbids to crave. Content I live, this is my stay ;

I seek no more than may suffice; I presse to beare no haughtie sway ;

Look what I lack my mind supplies. Loe! thus I triumph like a king, Content with that my mind doth bring.

I see how plentie surfets oft,

And hastie clymbers soonest fall: I see that such as sit aloft

Mishap doth threaten most of all: These get with toile, and keep with feare: Such cares my mind could never beare.

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No princely pomp, nor welthie store,

No force to winne the victorie, No wylie wit to salve a sore,

No shape to winne a lover's eye; To none of these I yeeld as thrall, For why my mind despiseth all.

Some have too much, yet still they crave,

I little have, yet seek no more:
They are but poore, tho' much they have;

And I am rich with little store:
They poor, I rich; they beg, I give ;
They lacke, I lend; they pine, I live,

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I laugh not at another's losse,

I grudge not at another's gaine ;
No worldly wave my mind can tosse,

I brooke that is another's bane :
I feare no foe, nor fawne on friend;
I lothe not life, nor dread mine end.

For care,

I joy not in no earthly blisse;
I weigh not Cresus' welth a straw;

I care not what it is;
I feare not fortune's fatall law :
My mind is such as may not move
For beautie bright or force of love.

I wish but what I have at will;

I wander not to seeke for more,

I like the plain, I clime no hill ;

In greatest storms I sitte on shore,
And laugh at them that toile in vaine
To get what must be lost againe.
I kisse not where I wish to kill;

I feigne not love where most I hate:
I break no sleep to winne my will;

I wayte not at the mightie's gate;
I scorn no poore, I feare no rich ;
I feel no want, nor have too much.

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The court, ne cart, I like, ne loath;

Extreames are counted worst of all:
The golden meane betwixt them both

Doth surest sit, and fears no fall:
This is my choyce, for why, I finde
No welth is like a quiet minde.
My welth is health, and perfect ease ;

My conscience clere my chiefe defence :
I never seek by brybes to please,

Nor by desert to give offence: Thus do I live, thus will I die; Would all did so as well as I !

Contentment gives a crown,
Where fortune hath deny'd it.


Thomas Ford.

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