Gateway to the Classics: Oxford Book of English Verse, Part 1 by Arthur Quiller-Couch
Oxford Book of English Verse, Part 1 by  Arthur Quiller-Couch

This World's Joy

Wynter wakeneth al my care,

Nou this leves waxeth bare;

Ofte I sike ant mourne sare

When hit cometh in my thoht

Of this worldes joie, hou hit goth al to noht.

Nou hit is, and nou hit nys,

Al so hit ner nere, ywys;

That moni mon seith, soth hit ys:

Al goth bote Godes wille:

Alle we shule deye, thah us like ylle.

Al that gren me graueth grene,

Nou hit faleweth albydene:

Jesu, help that hit be sene

Ant shild us from helle!

For y not whider y shal, ne hou longe her duelle.

— Anonymous
c. 1300   

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