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John Donne quotes (showing 1-30 of 119)

“No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend's or of thine own were: any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bells tolls; it tolls for thee.”
John Donne, No Man Is An Island
“No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face."

[The Autumnal]”
John Donne, The Complete Poetry and Selected Prose
“I am two fools, I know,
For loving, and for saying so.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
“And who understands? Not me, because if I did I would forgive it all.”
John Donne
“Yet nothing can to nothing fall,
Nor any place be empty quite;
Therefore I think my breast hath all
Those pieces still, though they be not unite;
And now, as broken glasses show
A hundred lesser faces, so
My rags of heart can like, wish, and adore,
But after one such love, can love no more.”
John Donne, The Complete Poetry and Selected Prose
“More than kisses, letters mingle souls.”
John Donne
“To know and feel all this and not have the words to express it makes a human a grave of his own thoughts.”
John Donne
Death Be Not Proud

Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for thou art not so;
For those, whom thou think'st thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poor Death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleep, which but thy picture[s] be,
Much pleasure, then from thee much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee do go,
Rest of their bones, and soul's delivery.
Thou'rt slave to Fate, chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell,
And poppy, or charms can make us sleep as well,
And better than thy stroke ; why swell'st thou then?
One short sleep past, we wake eternally,
And Death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.”
John Donne, The Complete Poetry and Selected Prose
“Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”
John Donne
“Love, built on beauty, soon as beauty, dies.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
“Then love is sin, and let me sinful be.”
John Donne
“Death is an ascension to a better library. ”
John Donne
“Licence my roving hands, and let them go
Before, behind, between, above, below.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
The Good-Morrow

I wonder by my troth, what thou, and I
Did, till we lov'd? Were we not wean'd till then?
But suck'd on countrey pleasures, childishly?
Or snorted we in the seaven sleepers den?
T'was so; But this, all pleasures fancies bee.
If ever any beauty I did see,
Which I desir'd, and got, 'twas but a dreame of thee.

And now good morrow to our waking soules,
Which watch not one another out of feare;
For love, all love of other sights controules,
And makes one little roome, an every where.
Let sea-discoverers to new worlds have gone,
Let Maps to other, worlds on worlds have showne,
Let us possesse one world; each hath one, and is one.

My face in thine eye, thine in mine appeares,
And true plaine hearts doe in the faces rest,
Where can we finde two better hemispheares
Without sharpe North, without declining West?
What ever dyes, was not mixed equally;
If our two loves be one, or, thou and I
Love so alike, that none doe slacken, none can die.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
“Batter my heart, three-person'd God ; for you
As yet but knock ; breathe, shine, and seek to mend ;
That I may rise, and stand, o'erthrow me, and bend
Your force, to break, blow, burn, and make me new.
I, like an usurp'd town, to another due,
Labour to admit you, but O, to no end.
Reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captived, and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain,
But am betroth'd unto your enemy ;
Divorce me, untie, or break that knot again,
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me.”
John Donne
“As virtuous men pass mildly away,
And whisper to their souls to go,
Whilst some of their sad friends do say,
"The breath goes now," and some say, "No,"

So let us melt, and make no noise,
No tear-floods, nor sigh-tempests move;
'Twere profanation of our joys
To tell the laity our love.

Moving of the earth brings harms and fears,
Men reckon what it did and meant;
But trepidation of the spheres,
Though greater far, is innocent.

Dull sublunary lovers' love
(Whose soul is sense) cannot admit
Absence, because it doth remove
Those things which elemented it.

But we, by a love so much refined
That our selves know not what it is,
Inter-assured of the mind,
Care less, eyes, lips, and hands to miss.

Our two souls therefore, which are one,
Though I must go, endure not yet
A breach, but an expansion.
Like gold to airy thinness beat.

If they be two, they are two so
As stiff twin compasses are two:
Thy soul, the fixed foot, makes no show
To move, but doth, if the other do;

And though it in the center sit,
Yet when the other far doth roam,
It leans, and hearkens after it,
And grows erect, as that comes home.

Such wilt thou be to me, who must,
Like the other foot, obliquely run;
Thy firmness makes my circle just,
And makes me end where I begun.”
John Donne
“My face in thine eye, thine in mine appeares,
And true plaine hearts doe in the faces rest,
Where can we finde two better hemispheares
Without sharpe North, without declining West?
What ever dyes, was not mixt equally;
If our two loves be one, or, thou and I
Love so alike, that none doe slacken, none can die.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
“we give each other a smile with a future in it”
John Donne
“Love's mysteries in souls do grow,
But yet the body is his book.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
“Come live with me, and be my love,
And we will some new pleasures prove
Of golden sands, and crystal brooks,
With silken lines, and silver hooks.”
John Donne
“And to 'scape stormy days, I choose an everlasting night.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
“Nature's great masterpiece, an elephant;
the only harmless great thing.”
John Donne
“Our two souls therefore, which are one,
Though I must go, endure not yet
A breach, but an expansion,
Like gold to aery thinness beat.

If they be two, they are two so
As stiff twin compasses are two ;
Thy soul, the fix'd foot, makes no show
To move, but doth, if th' other do.

And though it in the centre sit,
Yet, when the other far doth roam,
It leans, and hearkens after it,
And grows erect, as that comes home.

Such wilt thou be to me, who must,
Like th' other foot, obliquely run ;
Thy firmness makes my circle just,
And makes me end where I begun.”
John Donne
“No man is an island, entire of itself.”
John Donne, No Man Is An Island
“I am a little world made cunningly.”
John Donne
“Up then, fair phoenix bride, frustrate the sun;
Thyself from thine affection
Takest warmth enough, and from thine eye
All lesser birds will take their jollity.
Up, up, fair bride, and call
Thy stars from out their several boxes, take
Thy rubies, pearls, and diamonds forth, and make
Thyself a constellation of them all;
And by their blazing signify
That a great princess falls, but doth not die.
Be thou a new star, that to us portends
Ends of much wonder; and be thou those ends.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
“Here lies a she sun, and a he moon there;
She gives the best light to his sphere;
Or each is both, and all, and so
They unto one another nothing owe;
And yet they do, but are
So just and rich in that coin which they pay,
That neither would, nor needs forbear, nor stay;
Neither desires to be spared nor to spare.
They quickly pay their debt, and then
Take no acquittances, but pay again;
They pay, they give, they lend, and so let fall
No such occasion to be liberal.
More truth, more courage in these two do shine,
Than all thy turtles have and sparrows, Valentine.”
John Donne, The Complete English Poems
“Ve y coge una estrella fugaz;
fecunda a la raíz de mandrágora;
dime dónde está el pasado,
o quién hendió la pezuña del diablo;
enséñame a oír cómo canta la sirena,
a apartar el aguijón de la envidia,
y descubre
cual es el viento
que impulsa a una mente honesta.

Si has nacido para ver cosas extrañas,
cosas invisibles al ojo,
cabalga diez mil días y noches
hasta que la edad cubra de nieve tus cabellos.
Cuando retornes, me contarás
las extrañas maravillas que te acontecieron,
y jurarás
que en ningún lugar
vive una mujer justa y constante.

Si la encuentras, dímelo,
¡dulce peregrinación sería!
Pero no, porque no iría,
aunque fuera justo al lado;
aunque fiel, al encontrarla,
y hasta al escribir la carta,
sin embargo,
antes que fuera,
infiel con dos, o tres, fuera.”
John Donne, Howl's Moving Castle
“Other men's crosses are not my crosses.”
John Donne

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