Honest thought and simple truth

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How happy is he born and taught
That serveth not another's will
Whose armour is his honest thought
And simple truth his highest skill

Whose passions not his masters are
Whose soul is still prepared for death
Untied unto the world with care
Of princely love or vulgar breath

Who hath his life from rumours freed
Whose conscience is his strong retreat
Whose state can neither flatterers feed
Nor ruin make accusers great

Who God doth late and early pray
More of His grace than gifts to lend
Who entertains the harmless day
With a well chosen book or friend
This man is free from servile bands
Of hope to rise or fear to fall
Lord of himself, though not lands
And having noting, he hath all.

This work was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.