Poetical Works of Edmund Waller and Sir John Denham eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 232 pages of information about Poetical Works of Edmund Waller and Sir John Denham.

You by the help of tune and time,
Can make that song that was but rhyme. 
Noy[2] pleading, no man doubts the cause;
Or questions verses set by Lawes.

As a church window, thick with paint,
Lets in a light but dim and faint;
So others, with division, hide
The light of sense, the poet’s pride:  20
But you alone may proudly boast
That not a syllable is lost;
The writer’s and the setter’s skill
At once the ravish’d ears do fill. 
Let those which only warble long,
And gargle in their throats a song,
Content themselves with Ut, Re, Mi:[3]
Let words, and sense, be set by thee.
[1] ‘Lawes’:  an eminent musical composer, who composed the music for
    Milton’s Comus.
[2] ‘Noy’:  Attorney-General to Charles I., had died in 1635.  By a
    poetical licence Waller represents him still pleading.
[3] ‘Ut, Re, Mi’:  Lawes opposed the Italian music.

THE COUNTRY TO MY LADY CARLISLE.[1]

1 Madam, of all the sacred Muse inspired,
    Orpheus alone could with the woods comply;
  Their rude inhabitants his song admired,
    And Nature’s self, in those that could not lie: 
  Your beauty next our solitude invades,
  And warms us, shining through the thickest shades.

2 Nor ought the tribute, which the wond’ring Court
    Pays your fair eyes, prevail with you to scorn
  The answer and consent to that report
    Which, echo-like, the country does return: 
  Mirrors are taught to flatter, but our springs
  Present th’impartial images of things.

3 A rural judge disposed of beauty’s prize;
    A simple shepherd was preferr’d to Jove;
  Down to the mountains from the partial skies,
    Came Juno, Pallas, and the Queen of Love,
  To plead for that which was so justly given
  To the bright Carlisle of the court of heaven.

4 Carlisle! a name which all our woods are taught,
    Loud as their Amaryllis, to resound;
  Carlisle! a name which on the bark is wrought
    Of every tree that’s worthy of the wound. 
  From Phoebus’ rage our shadows and our streams
  May guard us better than from Carlisle’s beams.

[1] ‘Lady Carlisle’:  the Lady Lucy Percy, daughter of the Earl of
    Northumberland, married against her father’s wishes to the Earl of
    Carlisle.  She was a wit and intriguante.

TO PHYLLIS.

Phyllis! ’twas love that injured you,
And on that rock your Thrysis threw;
Who for proud Celia could have died,
While you no less accused his pride.

Fond Love his darts at random throws,
And nothing springs from what he sows;
From foes discharged, as often meet
The shining points of arrows fleet,
In the wide air creating fire,
As souls that join in one desire. 10

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Poetical Works of Edmund Waller and Sir John Denham from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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