Verse > Anthologies > T. H. Ward, ed. > The English Poets > Vol. II. Ben Jonson to Dryden
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Thomas Humphry Ward, ed.  The English Poets.  1880–1918.
Vol. II. The Seventeenth Century: Ben Jonson to Dryden
 
Art above Nature
By Robert Herrick (1591–1674)
 
WHEN I behold a forest spread
With silken trees upon thy head;
And when I see that other dress
Of flowers set in comeliness;
When I behold another grace        5
In the ascent of curious lace,
Which, like a pinnacle, doth shew
The top, and the top-gallant too;
Then, when I see thy tresses bound
Into an oval, square, or round,        10
And knit in knots far more than I
Can tell by tongue, or True-love tie;
Next, when those lawny films I see
Play with a wild civility;
And all those airy silks to flow,        15
Alluring me, and tempting so—
I must confess, mine eye and heart
Dotes less on nature than on art.
 
 
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