TYMES GOE BY TURNES
The loppèd tree in tyme may growe agayne;
Most naked plants renewe both frute and floure;
The soriest wight may finde release of payne,
The dry est soyle sucke in some moystning shoure;
Tymes go by turnes and chaunces chang by course,
From foule to fayre, from better happ to worse.
The sea of Fortune doth not ever floe,
She drawes her favours to the lowest ebb;
Her tide hath equall tymes to come and goe,
Her loome doth weave the fine and coarsest webb;
No joy so great but runneth to an ende,
No happ so harde but may in fine amende.
Not allwayes fall of leafe nor ever springe,
No endlesse night yet not eternall daye;
The saddest birdes a season finde to singe,
The roughest storme a calme may soone alaye;
Thus with succeding turnes God tempereth all,
That man may hope to rise yet feare to fall.
A chaunce may wynne that by mischance was lost;
The nett that houldes no greate, takes little fishe;
In some thinges all, in all thinges none are croste,
Fewe all they neede, but none have all they wishe;
Unmedled joyes here to no man befall,
Who least hath some, who most hath never all.
Robert Southwell, SJ
The arrangement of the poem is six lines, six lines, 12 lines: sestet, sestet, two sestets combined. The rhyme scheme of the first sestet is ABABCC. The other sestets follow the same pattern.
Southwell influenced at least one contemporary, Shakespeare. Brownlow, pp.93–6, 125. John Klause. Shakespeare, the Earl and the Jesuit. Madison & Teaneck, NJ: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2008, passim.