Verse > Anthologies > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of English Verse
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Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. 1919. The Oxford Book of English Verse: 1250–1900.
  
John Skelton. 1460?–1529
  
31. To Mistress Margaret Hussey
  
MERRY Margaret 
  As midsummer flower, 
  Gentle as falcon 
  Or hawk of the tower: 
With solace and gladness,         5
Much mirth and no madness, 
All good and no badness; 
    So joyously, 
    So maidenly, 
    So womanly  10
    Her demeaning 
    In every thing, 
    Far, far passing 
    That I can indite, 
    Or suffice to write  15
  Of Merry Margaret 
  As midsummer flower, 
  Gentle as falcon 
  Or hawk of the tower. 
  As patient and still  20
  And as full of good will 
  As fair Isaphill, 
  Coliander, 
  Sweet pomander, 
  Good Cassander;  25
  Steadfast of thought, 
  Well made, well wrought, 
  Far may be sought, 
  Ere that ye can find 
  So courteous, so kind  30
  As merry Margaret, 
  This midsummer flower, 
  Gentle as falcon 
  Or hawk of the tower. 
 
GLOSS:  Isaphill] Hypsipyle.  coliander] coriander seed, an aromatic.  pomander] a ball of perfume.  Cassander] Cassandra.
 
 
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