When I consider the rich regal chiefs of our community,
How much cowries enriched by, what obsequious honours;
How many wives, concubines, children, huts and further favours;
I muse, were I heir to these, what to me it should signify:
Then to exchange, with that of kings, my state of wretched penury,
And forgo my old loving parents, still who love me too dearly;
And choose such virgin-maid as I please of the maidenry, without pains to woo,
Though she should marvel at this rare favour too;
And buy sour-hearted, sweet-lipped friends about, to speak in vulgar gatherings,
How we take pleasure in rude insolent things,
How we have some old man spat on, and augmented some old lady’s burden –
With all this still I couldn’t be happy, but think my sorrows would heighten!
Then that old civil war in me, resurging again, restores new peace;
When, sick with all these, I think your love true, as man’s for food is!