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Poems Every Child Should Know by  Mary E. Burt


 

 

POLONIUS' ADVICE

[301]

See thou character. Give thy thoughts no tongue,

Nor any unproportion'd thought his act.

Be thou familiar, but by no means vulgar:

The friends thou hast, and their adoption tried,

Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel;

But do not dull thy palm with entertainment

Of each new-hatch'd, unfledg'd comrade. Beware

Of entrance to a quarrel; but, being in,

Bear 't that th' opposed may beware of thee.

Give every man thine ear, but few thy voice:

Take each man's censure, but reserve thy judgment.

Costly thy habit as thy purse can buy

But not expressed in fancy; rich, not gaudy:

For the apparel oft proclaims the man.

Neither a borrower nor a lender be;

For loan oft loses both itself and friend,

And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.

This above all: to thine own self be true;

And it must follow, as the night the day,

Thou canst not then be false to any man.


SHAKESPEARE ("HAMLET").


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