Verse > Anthologies > Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. > Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry
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Ralph Waldo Emerson, comp. (1803–1882).  Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry.  1880.
 
The Bride
By Edmund Spenser (1552?–1599)
 
(See full text.)

LO! where she comes along with portly pace,
Like Phœbe from her chamber of the east,
Arising forth to run her mighty race,
Clad all in white, that seems a virgin best.
So well it her beseems, that ye would ween        5
Some angel she had been.
Her long, loose yellow locks, like golden wire,
Sprinkled with pearl, and pearling flowers atween,
Do like a golden mantle her attire;
And being crownèd with a garland green,        10
Seem like some maiden queen.
Her modest eyes abashèd to behold
So many gazers as on her do stare,
Upon the lowly ground affixèd are;
Ne dare lift up her countenance too bold,        15
But blush to hear her praises sung so loud,
So far from being proud.
Nathless do ye still loud her praises sing,
That all the woods may answer, and your echo ring.
 
Tell me, ye merchants’ daughters, did ye see        20
So fair a creature in your town before?
So sweet, so lovely, and so mild as she,
Adorned with Beauty’s grace and Virtue’s store?
Her goodly eyes like sapphires, shining bright,
Her forehead ivory white,        25
Her cheeks like apples which the sun hath rudded,
Her lips like cherries charming men to bite.
Her breast like to a bowl of cream uncrudded,
Her paps like lilies budded,
Her snowy neck like to a marble tower;        30
And all her body like a palace fair,
Ascending up with many a stately stair
To Honor’s seat and Chastity’s sweet bower.
 
Why stand ye still, ye virgins, in amaze,
Upon her so to gaze,        35
Whilst ye forget your former lay to sing,
To which the woods did answer, and your echo ring.
 
 
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