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 Quip
By George Herbert (1593–1633)
 
THE MERRY world did on a day
With his train-bands and mates agree
To meet together, where I lay,
And all in sport to jeer at me.
 
First, Beauty crept into a rose;        5
Which when I plucked not—“Sir,” said she,
“Tell me, I pray, whose hands are those?”
But thou shalt answer, Lord, for me.
 
Then Money came; and, chinking still—
“What tune is this, poor man?” said he;        10
“I heard in music you had skill.”
But thou shalt answer, Lord, for me.
 
Then came brave Glory puffing by,
In silks, that whistled—“Who but he?”
He scarce allowed me half an eye.        15
But thou shalt answer, Lord, for me.
 
Then came quick Wit and Conversation;
And he would needs a comfort be,
And, to be short, make an oration.
But thou shalt answer, Lord, for me.        20
 
Yet, when the hour of thy design
To answer these fine things shall come,
Speak not at large; say I am thine;
And then they have their answer home.
 
 
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