31 March 2007

A Chaucerian sonnet

Whan that Aprille doth March displace,
with weping, walinge, and cryes folk do disporte
for there beth ne shelter ne resorte;
the IRS doth every fotestepe trace,
and will nat grante even a minute's grace,
an ye paye not, thenne the kyng his courte,
shall distrain on ye, and ye shall fallen shorte.
Empty will be thyne pockets, and longe thyn face.
The reeve and miller shall with bailie strive,
the wyfe of Bath shall kepe a civil tongue,
and franklin shall kepe cheke upon fre thoughte;
tis not the time for knight or squire to wyve,
the prioresse shalle nat of love have sunge,
and all take care to do the thinges they oughte.

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