by John Donne

Go and catch a falling star,
Get with child a mandrake root,
Tell me where all past years are,
Or who cleft the Devil’s foot,
Teach me to hear mermaids singing,
Or to keep off envy’s stinging,
          And find
          What wind
Serves to advance an honest mind.

If thou be’est borne to strange sights,
Things invisible to see,
Ride ten thousand days and nights,
Till age snow white hairs on thee.
Thou, when thou return’st, wilt tell me
All strange wonders that befell thee,
          And swear
          No where
Lives a woman true, and fair.

If thou findst one, let me know,
Such a pilgrimage were sweet;
Yet do not, I would not go,
Though at next door we might meet,
Though she were true when you met her,
And last till you write your letter,
          Yet she
          Will be
False, ere I come, to two or three.


Read by Alec Snoddie, who works in the Burns Unit of a major hospital. Two of his poems were in a recent issue of The Flea; others have appeared in New Drouth and Brython, but nobody knows how they got there.
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