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.
 
The Lure
By John Hall (1627–1656)
 
  FAREWELL! Nay, prithee turn again;
  Rather than lose thee I’ll arraign
Myself before thee! thou (most fair!) shall be
    Thyself the judge:
    I’ll never grudge        5
  A law ordained by thee.
 
  Pray do but see how every rose
  A sanguine visage doth disclose;
O! see what aromatic gusts they breathe;
    Come, here we’ll sit,        10
    And learn to knit
  Them up into a wreath.
 
  With that wreath crownèd shalt thou be;
  Not graced by it, but it by thee;
Then shall the fawning zephyrs wait to hear        15
    What thou shalt say,
    And softly play,
  While news to me they bear.
 
  See how they revelling appear
  Within the windings of thy hair,        20
See how they steal the choicest odours from
    The balmy spring,
    That they may bring
  Them to thee, when they come.
 
  Look how the daffodils arise,        25
  Cheer’d by the influence of thine eyes,
And others emulating them deny;
    They cannot strain
    To bloom again,
  Where such strong beams do fly.        30
 
  Be not ungrateful, but lie down,
  Since for thy sake so brisk they’re grown,
And such a downy carpet have bespread,
    That pure delight
    Is freshly dight,        35
  And trick’d in white and red.
 
  Be conquer’d by such charms, there shall
  Not always such enticements fall;
What know we, whether that rich spring of light
    Will stanch his streams        40
    Of golden beams,
  Ere the approach of night.
 
  How know we whether ’t shall not be
  The last to either thee or me?
He can at will his ancient brightness gain;        45
    But thou and I,
    When we shall die,
  Shall still in dust remain.
 
  Come, prithee come, we’ll now essay
  To piece the scant’ness of the day,        50
We’ll pluck the wheels from th’ chariot of the sun,
    That he may give
    Us time to live,
  Till that our scene be done.
 
  W’ are in the blossom of our age,        55
  Let us dance o’er, not tread the stage;
Though fear and sorrow strive to pull us back,
    And still present
    Doubts of content,
  They shall not make us slack.        60
 
  We’ll suffer viperous thoughts and cares
  To follow after silver hairs;
Let’s not anticipate them long before,
    When they begin
    To enter in,        65
  Each minute they’ll grow more.
 
  No, no, Romira, see this brook,
  How ’t would its posting course revoke
Ere it shall in the ocean mingled lie;
    And what, I pray,        70
    May cause this stay,
  But to attest our joy?
 
  Far be’t from lust; such wildfire ne’er
  Shall dare to lurk or kindle here;
Diviner flames shall in our fancies roll,        75
    Which not depress
    To earthliness,
  But elevate the soul.
 
  Then shall aggrandis’d love confess
  That souls can mingle substances,        80
That hearts can eas’ly counter-changèd be,
    Or at the least
    Can alter breasts,
  When breasts themselves agree.
 
 
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