Mark but this flea, and mark in this, How little what which thou deniest me is; It Sucked me first, and now sucks thee, And in this flea our two bloods mingled be; Thou knows that this cannot be said. A sin, nor shame, nor loss of maidenhead, Yet this enjoy before it woo, And pampered swells with one blood made of tw, And this, alas, is more than we could do.
Ohh stay, three lives in one flea spare, Where we almost, nay more than married are. This flea is you and I, and this our marriage bed, and marriage temple is; Though parents grudge, and you, w’are met, And cloistered in this living wall of jet. Though use make you apt to keel me, Let not to that, self murder added be, And Sacrilege, three sins in killing three.
Cruel and sudden, hast thou since Purpled thy nail, in blood of innocence? Wherein could this flea guilty be, Except in that drop which it sucked from thee? Yet thou triumph’st and say’st that thou. Find’st not thy self, nor me the weaker now; Tis true; then learn how false, fear be: Just so much honor, when thou yield’st to me, Will waste, as this flea’s death took life from thee.
– John Donne, poet