Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > The Book of Elizabethan Verse
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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed.  The Book of Elizabethan Verse.  1907.
 
To His Lute
By William Drummond of Hawthornden (1585–1649)
 
MY 1 lute, be as thou wert when thou didst grow
With thy green mother in some shady grove,
When immelodious winds but made thee move,
And birds on thee their ramage 2 did bestow.
Sith that dear voice which did thy sounds approve,        5
Which wont in such harmonious strains to flow,
Is reft from earth to tune those spheres above,
What art thou but a harbinger of woe?
Thy pleasing notes be pleasing notes no more,
But orphans’ waitings to the fainting ear;        10
Each stop a sigh, each sound draws forth a tear;
Be therefore silent as in woods before;
Or if that any hand to touch thee deign,
Like widow’d turtle, still her loss complain.
 
Note 1. From Poems, Amorous, Funeral, etc., Part II., 1616. [back]
Note 2. Ramage: music of the bough, woodland song. [back]
 
 
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