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.
 
Song: ‘Ye happy swains whose hearts are free’
By Sir George Etherege (1635?–1691)
 
YE happy swains whose hearts are free
  From Love’s imperial chain,
Take warning and be taught by me
  T’ avoid th’ enchanting pain;
Fatal the wolves to trembling flocks,        5
  Fierce winds to blossoms prove,
To careless seamen, hidden rocks,
  To human quiet, love.
 
Fly the fair sex, if bliss you prize;
  The snake’s beneath the flower:        10
Whoever gazed on beauteous eyes,
  That tasted quiet more?
How faithless is the lovers’ joy!
  How constant is their care
The kind with falsehood to destroy,        15
  The cruel, with despair!
 
 
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