One day I wrote her name


Amoretti Sonnet LXXV


One day I wrote her name upon the strand,

but came the waves and washed it away:
agayne I wrote it with a second hand,
but came the tyde, and made my paynes his prey.
Vayne man, sayd she, that doest in vaine assay,
a mortall thing so to immortalize;
for I myself shall lyke to this decay,
And eek my name bee wyped out lykewise.
Not so, (quod I) let baser things devise
to dye in dust, but you shall live by fame:
my verse your vertues rare shall eternize,
and in the heavens wryte your glorious name:
Where whenas death shall all the world subdew,
our love shall live, and later life renew.
Edmund Spenser


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