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This was the generous poet's scope;
And all an English pen can hope;
To make the fair approve his flame,
That can so far extend their name.

Verse, thus design'd, has no ill fate,
If it arrive but at the date
Of fading beauty ; if it prove
But as long-lived as present love.

Edmund Waller.




Thyrsis, a youth of the inspired train,
Fair Sacharissa loved, but loved in vain :
Like Phoebus sung the no less amorous boy;
Like Daphne she, as lovely, and as coy!
With numbers he the flying nymph pursues;
With numbers, such as Phæbus' self might use !
Such is the chase, when Love and Fancy leads,
O’er craggy mountains, and thro’ flowery meads;
Invoked to testify the lover's care,
Or form some image of his cruel fair.
Urged with his fury, like a wounded deer,
O'er these he fled; and now approaching near,
Had reach'd the nymph with his harmonious lay,
Whom all his charms could not incline to stay.
Yet, what he sung in his immortal strain,
Though unsuccessful, was not sung in vain :
All, but the nymph who should redress his wrong,
Attend his passion, and approve his song,
Like Phoebus thus, acquiring unsought praise,
He catch'd at love, and fill'd his arms with bays.

Edmund Waller.


Phillis, for shame ! let us improve,

A thousand different ways,
These few short moments snatch'd by love

From many tedious days.

If you want courage to despise

The censure of the grave,
Tho' Love's a tyrant in your eyes,

Your heart is but a slave.

My love is full of noble pride;

Nor can it e'er submit
To let that fop, Discretion, ride

In triumph over it.
False friends I have, as well as you,

Who daily counsel me
Fame and Ambition to pursue,

And leave off loving thee.

But when the least regard I show

To fools who thus advise,
May I be dull enough to grow
Most miserably wise !

Charles Sackville, Earl of Dorset.




CHLORIS ! yourself you so excel,

When you vouchsafe to breathe my thought, That, like a spirit, with this spell

Of my own teaching, I am caught.

That eagle's fate and mine are one,

Which, on the shaft that made him die, Espied a feather of his own,

Wherewith he wont to soar so high.

Had Echo, with so sweet a grace,

Narcissus' loud complaints return'd,
Not for reflection of his face,
But of his voice, the boy had burn'd.

Edmund Waller.

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DORINDA's sparkling wit and eyes

United, cast too fierce a light,
Which blazes high, but quickly dies;

Pains not the heart, but hurts the sight.

Love is a calmer, gentler joy:

Smooth are his looks, and soft his pace;
Her Cupid is a blackguard boy,
That runs his link full in your face.

Charles Sackville, Earl of Dorset.




To all you ladies now on land,

We men at sea indite;
But first would have you understand

How hard it is to write:
The muses now, and Neptune too,
We must implore to write to you.

With a fa la, la, la, la.
For tho' the muses should prove kind,

And fill our empty brain;
Yet if rough Neptune rouse the wind,

To wave the azure main,
Our paper, pen, and ink, and we
Roll up and down our ships at sea.

Then, if we write not by each post,

Think not we are unkind;
Nor yet conclude our ships are lost

By Dutchmen or by wind;
Our tears we'll send a speedier way:
The tide shall bring them twice a day.

The king with wonder and surprise,

Will swear the seas grow bold;

Because the tides will higher rise

Than e'er they did of old:
But let him know it is our tears
Bring floods of grief to Whitehall-stairs.
Should foggy Opdam chance to know

Our sad and dismal story,
The Dutch would scorn so weak a foe,

And quit their fort at Goree;
For what resistance can they find
From men who've left their hearts behind ?
Let wind and weather do its worst,

Be you to us but kind;
Let Dutchmen vapour, Spaniards curse,

No sorrow we shall find :
'Tis then no matter how things go,
Or who's our friend, or who's our foe.
To pass our tedious hours away,

We throw a merry main :
Or else at serious ombre play;

But why should we in vain
Each other's ruin thus pursue ?
We were undone when we left

you. But now our fears tempestuous grow,

And cast our hopes away;
Whilst you, regardless of our wo,

Sit careless at a play:
Perhaps permit some happier man
To kiss your hand, or flirt your fan.
When any mournful tune you hear,

That dies in every note,
As if it sigh’d with each man's care

For being so remote:
Think then how often love we've made
To you, when all those tunes were play'd.
In justice, you cannot refuse

To think of our distress,
When we for hopes of honour lose

Our certain happiness;
All these designs are but to prove
Ourselves more worthy of your love.

And now we've told you all our loves,

And likewise all our fears,
In hopes this declaration moves

Some pity for our tears;
Let's hear of no inconstancy,
We have too much of that at sea.

With a fa la, la, la, la.

Charles Sackville, Earl of Dorset.


WHEN Love with unconfined wings

Hovers within my gates,
And my divine Althea brings

To whisper at the grates;
When I lie tangled in her hair

And fetter'd to her eye,
The birds that wanton in the air

Know no such liberty.
When flowing cups run swiftly round

With no allaying Thames,
Our careless heads with roses crown'd,

Our hearts with loyal flames;
When thirsty grief in wine we steep,

When healths and draughts go freeFishes that tipple in the deep

Know no such liberty.
When, linnet-like confinèd, I

With shriller throat shall sing
The sweetness, mercy, majesty

And glories of my king;
When I shall voice aloud how good

He is, how great should be,
Enlarged winds, that curl the flood,

Know no such liberty.
Stone walls do not a prison make,

Nor iron bars a cage;
Minds innocent and quiet take
That for a hermitage :

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