Let me not feel more than may be borne
For others’ troubles, cares and strife.
I am too young to be thus forlorn,
Too old to hope; to love; to wife.
Give me but coin, my span on Earth
And lend me not another’s fear;
(I’ve precious little left of worth
Still less to broker bargains here).
I promise, but to do my best
And nothing more may take from me
Those greedy souls, whose “Fie!” on rest
Would wrest what time I, false, term ‘free’.
I cannot speak, but as I find
All else would be as empty air
What use, my hand, my heart, or mind
When weighed against such meaty fare?
And fair or foul as all may be
At moments suited to their mood
I can no more deceive than see
Through blackest darkness; I’ll be good.