Poem of the day

The Legacy
by John Donne (1572-1631)

When last I died, and, dear, I die
      As often as from thee I go,
      Though it be but an hour ago
—And lovers’ hours be full eternity—
I can remember yet, that I
      Something did say, and something did bestow;
Though I be dead, which sent me, I might be
Mine own executor, and legacy.

I heard me say, “Tell her anon,
      That myself,” that is you, not I,
      “Did kill me,” and when I felt me die,
I bid me send my heart, when I was gone;
But I alas! could there find none;
      When I had ripp’d, and search’d where hearts should lie,
It kill’d me again, that I who still was true
In life, in my last will should cozen you.

Yet I found something like a heart,
      But colours it, and corners had;
      It was not good, it was not bad,
It was entire to none, and few had part;
As good as could be made by art
      It seem’d, and therefore for our loss be sad.
I meant to send that heart instead of mine,
But O! no man could hold it, for ’twas thine.

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