Indeed the Idols I have loved so long
Have done my credit in Men's eye much wrong:
Have drown'd my Glory in a shallow Cup,
And sold my Reputation for a Song.
Indeed, indeed, Repentance oft before
I swore---but was I sober when I swore?
And then and then came Spring, and Rose-in-hand
My thread-bare Penitence apieces tore.
And much as Wine has play'd the Infidel,
And robb'd me of my Robe of Honour---Well,
I wonder often what the Vintners buy
One half so precious as the stuff they sell.
Vedder's note: It is useless and even pernicious, if one wishes to
combat the seductiveness of the pleasures of the senses, utterly to ignore
them. They exist as much as man's other faculties, and have their
proper uses and place. Examine and dissect them, and one will be
enabled to give them their proper weight. This is the aim of the poet
against an overwhelming pressure in the other direction leading only to
hypocrisy, a thing which Omar most of all detests.