My Mind to me a Kingdom is
<poem> My mind to me a kingdom is; Such perfect joy therein I find That it excels all other bliss That world affords or grows by kind. Though much I want which most men have, Yet still my mind forbids to crave.
No princely pomp, no wealthy store, No force to win the victory, No wily wit to salve a sore, No shape to feed each gazing eye; To none of these I yield as thrall. For why my mind doth serve for all.
I see how plenty suffers oft, How hasty climbers soon do fall; I see that those that are aloft Mishap doth threaten most of all; They get with toil, they keep with fear. Such cares my mind could never bear.
Content I live, this is my stay; I seek no more than may suffice; I press to bear no haughty sway; Look what I lack my mind supplies; Lo, thus I triumph like a king, Content with that my mind doth bring.
I little have, and seek no more. They are but poor, though much they have, And I am rich with little store. They poor, I rich; they beg, I give; They lack, I leave, they pine, I live.
I laugh not at another's loss; I grudge not at another's gain: No worldly waves my mind can toss; My state at one doth still remain. I fear no foe, nor fawning friend; I loathe not life, nor dread my end.
Some weigh their pleasure by their lust, Their wisdom by their rage of will, Their treasure is their only trust; And cloaked craft their store of skill. But all the pleasure that I find Is to maintain a quiet mind.
My wealth is health and perfect ease; My conscience clear my chief defense; I neither seek by bribes to please, Nor by deceit to breed offense. Thus do I live; thus will I die. Would all did so as well as I!