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The Message

[ Roud - ; John Donne]

Eliza Carthy sang John Donne’s poem The Message on her 2023 album Conversations We’ve Had Before. She noted:

By John Donne. Just brutal! My eyes and bits are all spoiled, ruined by your treacherousness, but give them back now they’re all spoiled so I can use them to laugh at you when someone treats you as badly as you have treated me. I’m a cow now, and it’s your fault. Ouch.


Eliza Carthy sings The Message

Send home my long stray’d eyes to me,
Which for too long have dwelt on thee,
Yet since they there have learn’d such ill,
Such forc’d fashions,
And false passions,
That they be
Made by thee
Fit for no good sight, keep them still.

Send home my harmless heart again,
Which no unworthy thought did stain,
O but if it be taught by thine
To make jestings
Of protestings,
And cross both
Word and oath,
O, keep it, for then it’s none of mine.

Yet send me back my heart and eyes,
That I may know, and see thy lies,
And may laugh and joy, when thou
Art in anguish
And do languish
For some one
That will none,
Or prove as false as thou art now.