Page images

The morning rose, that untouch'd stands,

Arm'd with her briars, how sweet her smell ! But pluck'd, and strain'd through ruder hands,

Her sweets no longer with her dwell; But scent and beauty both are gone, And leaves fall from her, one by one. Such fate, ere long, will thee betide,

When thou has handled been awhile,
Like sere flowers to be thrown aside;

And I will sigh, while some will smile,
To see thy love for more than one
Hath brought thee to be loved by none.

Sir Robert Ayton.


Now gentle sleep hath closed up those eyes

Which, waking, kept my boldest thoughts in awe; And free access unto that sweet lip lies,

From whence I long the rosy breath to draw. Methinks no wrong it were, if I should steal

From those two melting rubies one poor kiss; None sees the theft that would the theft reveal,

Nor rob I her of aught that she can miss; Nay, should I twenty kisses take away,

There would be little sign I would do so;
Why then should I this robbery delay ?

O, she may wake, and therewith angry grow!
Well, if she do, I'll back restore that one,
And twenty hundred thousand more for loan.

George Wither.


DRINK to me only with thine eyes,

And I will pledge with mine;
Or leave a kiss but in the cup

And I'll not look for wine.
The thirst that from the soul doth rise

Doth ask a drink divine;
But might I of Jove's nectar sup,

I would not change for thine.

I sent thee late a rosy wreath,

Not so much honouring thee
As giving it a hope that there

It could not wither'd be:
But thou thereon didst only breathe

And sent'st it back to me;
Since when it grows, and smells, I swear,
Not of itself, but thee !

Ben Jonson.



AMARYLLIS I did woo,
And I courted Phillis too;
Daphne for her love I chose,
Chloris, for that damask rose
In her cheek, I held so dear,
Yea, a thousand liked well near;
And, in love with all together,
Feared the enjoying either:
'Cause to be of one possess'd,
Barr'd the hope of all the rest.

George Wither.



Her Triumph.
SEE the chariot at hand here of Love,

Wherein my lady rideth !
Each that draws is a swan or a dove,

And well the car Love guideth.
As she goes all hearts do duty
Unto her beauty;
And enamour'd, do wish, as they might
But enjoy such a sight,
That they still were to run by her side,
Through swords, through seas, whither she would


Do but look on her eyes, they do light

All that Love's world compriseth! Do but look on her, she is bright

As Love's star when it riseth ! Do but mark, her forehead's smoother Than words that soothe her! And from her arch'd brows, such a grace Sheds itself through her face, As alone there triumphs to the life All the gain, all the good of the elements' strife. Have you seen but a bright lily grow,

Before rude hands have touch'd it ?
Have you mark'd but the fall o' the snow

Before the soil hath smutch'd it ?
Have you felt the wool of the beaver ?
Or swan's down ever ?
Or have smellid o' the bud of the briar?
Or the 'nard in the fire ?
Or have tasted the bag of the bee?
O so white ! O so soft! O so sweet is she !

Ben Jonson.



He that loves a rosy cheek,

Or a coral lip admires,
Or from star-like eyes doth seek

Fuel to maintain his fires;
As old Time makes these decay,
So his flames must waste away.

But a smooth and steadfast mind,

Gentle thoughts, and calm desires,-
Hearts with equal love combined,

Kindle never-dying fires;
Where these are not, I despise
Lovely cheeks, or lips, or eyes.

Thomas Carew.


A LOVER of late was I,

For Cupid would have it so; (The boy that had never an eye

As every man doth know.) I sigh'd, and sobb’d, and cried, “alas," For her that laugh'd and call'd me ass. Then knew not I what to do,

When I saw it was in vain
A lady so coy to woo,

Who gave me the ass so plain;
Yet would I her ass freely be,
So she would help, and bear with me.
An' I were as fair as she,

Or she were as kind as me,
What pair could have made, as we

So pretty a sympathy:
I was as kind as she was fair;
But for all this we could not pair.
Pair with her that will for me!

With her I will never pair
That cunningly can be coy,

For being a little fair-
The ass I'll leave to her disdain ;
And now I am myself again.



FAIN would I, Chloris, ere I die,
Bequeath you such a legacy,
That you might say, when I am gone,
None hath the like:--my heart alone
Were the best gift I could bestow,
But that's already yours, you know:
So that till you my heart resign,
Or fill with yours the place of mine,
And by that grace my store renew,
I shall have nought worth giving you

Whose breast has all the wealth I have,
Save a faint carcass and a grave.
But had I as many hearts as hairs,
As many loves as love has fears,
As many lives as years have hours,
They should be all and only yours.





How now, shepherd, what means that?
Why that willow in thy hat?
Why thy scarfs of red and yellow,
Turn’d to branches of green willow?

They are changed, and so am I;
Sorrows live, but pleasures die:
Phillis hath forsaken me,
Which makes me wear the willow-tree.

Phillis! she that loved thee long?
Is she the lass hath done thee wrong?
She that loved thee long and best,
Is her love turn'd to a jest?

She that long true love profest,
She hath robb’d my heart of rest :
For she a new love loves, not me;
Which makes me wear the willow-tree.

Come then, shepherd, let us join,
Since thy hap is like to mine:
For the maid I thought most true,
She hath also bid adieu.

« PreviousContinue »