Absent from thee, I languish still;
Then ask me not, When I return?
The straying fool ’twill plainly kill
To wish all day, all night to mourn. Dear, from thine arms then let me fly,
That my fantastic mind may prove
The torments it deserves to try,
That tears my fix’d heart from my love. When, wearied with a world of woe,
To thy safe bosom I retire,
Where love, and peace, and truth does flow,
May I contented there expire! Lest, once more wandering from that heaven,
I fall on some base heart unblest;
Faithless to thee, false, unforgiven–
And lose my everlasting rest.
–John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester