Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > The Book of Restoration Verse
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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed.  The Book of Restoration Verse.  1910.
 
On Time
By John Milton (1608–1674)
 
FLY envious Time, till thou run out thy race,
Call on the lazy leaden-steeping hours,
Whose speed is but the heavy Plummets pace; 1
And glut thy self with what thy womb devours,
Which is no more then what is false and vain,        5
And meerly mortal dross;
So little is our loss,
So little is thy gain.
For when as each thing bad thou hast entomb’d,
And last of all, thy greedy self consum’d,        10
Then long Eternity shall greet our bliss
With an individual kiss; 2
And Joy shall overtake us as a flood,
When every thing that is sincerely good
And perfectly divine,        15
With Truth, and Peace, and Love shall ever shine
About the supreme Throne
Of him, t’whose happy-making sight alone,
When once our heav’nly-guided soul shall clime,
Then all this Earthy grosnes quit,        20
Attir’d with Stars, we shall for ever sit,
  Triumphing over Death, and Chance, and thee O Time.
 
Note 1. The heavy Plummets pace: “the slow descent of weights in an old-fashioned clock.” [back]
Note 2. Individual kiss: i.e., inseparable, not to be divided. [back]
 
 
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