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YE living lamps, by whose dear light

The Nightingale does sit so late, And, studying all the summer night,

Her matchless song does meditate;

Ye country comets, that portend

No war, nor prince's funeral, Shining unto no other end

Than to presage the grass's fall;

Ye Glow-worms, whose officious flame

To wandering mowers shows the way, That in the night have lost their aim,

And after foolish flies do stray;

Your courteous lights in vain you waste,

Since Juliana here is come;
For she my mind hath so displaced,

That I shall never find my home.


My eye descending from the Hill, surveys
Where Thames among the wanton valleys strays.
Thames! the most loved of all the Ocean's sons
By his old sire, to his embraces runs,
Hasting to pay his tribute to the sea,
Like mortal life to meet eternity.
Though with those streams he no resemblance hold
Whose foam is amber, and their gravel gold ;
His genuine and less guilty wealth t' explore,
Search not his bottom, but survey his shore ;
O'er which he kindly spreads his spacious wing,
And hatches plenty for th’ ensuing spring ;
Nor then destroys it with too fond a stay,
Like mothers which their infants overlay ;
Nor with a sudden and impetuous wave,
Like profuse kings, resumes the wealth he gave.
No unexpected inundations spoil
The mower's hopes, nor mock the ploughman's toil ;
But godlike his unwearied bounty flows;
First loves to do, then loves the good he does.
Nor are his blessings to his banks confined,
But free, and common, as the sea or wind ;
When he, to boast or to disperse his stores,
Full of the tributes of his grateful shores,
Visits the world, and in his flying towers
Brings home to us, and makes both Indies ours;
Finds wealth where 'tis, bestows it where it wants,
Cities in deserts, woods in cities plants.
So that to us no thing, no place is strange,
While his fair bosom is the world's exchange.
Oh could I flow like thee, and make thy stream
My great example, as it is my theme!
Though deep yet clear, though gentle yet not dull;
Strong without rage, without o'erflowing full.

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TELL me not, sweet! I am unkind,

That from the nunnery Of thy chaste breast, and quiet mind,

To war and arms I fly.

True, a new mistress now I chase,

The first foe in the field; And, with a stronger faith, embrace

A sword, a horse, a shield.

Yet this inconstancy is such

As you, too, shall adore; I could not love thee, dear! so much,

Loved I not honour more.


When Love, with unconfined wings,

Hovers within my gates, And my divine Althea brings

To whisper at the grates;

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LUXURIOUS man, to bring his vice in use,

Did after him the world seduce; And from the fields, the flowers and plants allure,

Where Nature was most plain and pure. He first enclosed within the garden's square

A dead and standing pool of air;
And a more luscious earth from them did knead,

Which stupefied them while it fed.
The pink grew then as double as his mind:

The nutriment did change the kind.
With strange perfumes he did the roses taint;

And flowers themselves were taught to paint.


The tulip white did for complexion seek,

And learned to interline its cheek;
The onion root they then so high did hold,

That one was for a meadow sold;
Another world was searched through oceans new,

To find the marble of Peru.
And yet these rarities might be allowed

To Man, that sovereign thing and proud,
Had he not dealt between the bark and tree,

Forbidden mixtures there to see. No plant now knew the stock from which it came;

He grafts upon the wild the tame, That the uncertain and adulterate fruit

Might put the palate in dispute. 'Tis all enforced, the fountain, and the grot,

While the sweet fields do lie forgot,
Where willing Nature does to all dispense

A wild and fragrant innocence;
And fauns and fairies do the meadows till,

More by their presence than their skill.
Their statues, polished by some ancient hand,

May to adorn the gardens stand; But, howsoe'er the figures do excel,

The Gods themselves with us do dwell.

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