"The Collar" by George Herbert(1593-1633)

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I STRUCK the board, and cry?d, No more ;

I will abroad.

What ? shall I ever sigh and pine ?

My lines and life are free ; free as the rode,

Loose as the winde, as large as store.

Shall I be still in suit ?

Have I no harvest but a thorn

To let me bloud, and not restore

What I have lost with cordiall fruit ?

Sure there was wine,

Before my sighs did drie it : there was corn

Before my tears did drown it.

Is the yeare onely lost to me ?

Have I no bayes to crown it ?

No flowers, no garlands gay ? all blasted ?

All wasted ?

Not so, my heart : but there is fruit,

And thou hast hands.

Recover all thy sigh-blown age

On double pleasures : leave thy cold dispute

Of what is fit, and not forsake thy cage,

Thy rope of sands,

Which pettie thoughts have made, and made to thee

Good cable, to enforce and draw,

And be thy law,

While thou didst wink and wouldst not see.

Away ; take heed :

I will abroad.

Call in thy deaths head there : tie up thy fears.

He that forbears

To suit and serve his need,

Deserves his load.

But as I rav?d and grew more fierce and wilde,

At every word,

Methought I heard one calling, Childe :

And I reply?d, My Lord.

The Collar

Perhaps the best treatment of the subject of submission to the Divine Will is to be found in The Collar, which is certainly among the most celebrated of Herbert's lyrics. Once again, the form closely mirrors the argument. The poem opens with an account of an exasperated outburst of rebellion by the poet:

"I struck the board, and cry'd,