Robert Herrick


Chorus Sacerdotum. FROM the temple to your home
              May a thousand blessings come !
              And a sweet concurring stream
              Of all joys to join with them.

Chorus Juvenum.    Happy Day,
                         Make no long stay
                              In thy sphere ;
              But give thy place to Night,
                                     That she,
                                     As thee,
                                     May be
              Partaker of this sight.
              And since it was thy care
              To see the younglings wed,
              'Tis fit that Night the pair
              Should see safe brought to bed.

Chorus Senum. Go to your banquet then, but use delight,
    So as to rise still with an appetite.
    Love is a thing most nice, and must be fed
    To such a height, but never surfeited.
    What is beyond the mean is ever ill :
    'Tis best to feed Love, but not overfill ;
    Go then discreetly to the bed of pleasure,
    And this remember, virtue keeps the measure.

Chorus Virginum. Lucky signs we have descri'd
              To encourage on the bride,
              And to these we have espi'd,
              Not a kissing Cupid flies
              Here about, but has his eyes
              To imply your love is wise.

Chorus Pastorum. Here we present a fleece
              To make a piece
                     Of cloth ;
       Nor, fair, must you be loth
              Your finger to apply
                     To housewifery.
                     Then, then begin
                         To spin :
And, sweetling, mark you, what a web will come
Into your chests, drawn by your painful thumb.

Chorus Matronarum. Set you to your wheel, and wax
           Rich by the ductile wool and flax.
    Yarn is an income, and the housewives' thread
    The larder fills with meat, the bin with bread.

Chorus Senum. Let wealth come in by comely thrift
       And not by any sordid shift ;
                         'Tis haste
                         Makes waste :
                  Extremes have still their fault :
The softest fire makes the sweetest malt :
Who grips too hard the dry and slippery sand,
Holds none at all, or little in his hand.

Chorus Virginum. Goddess of pleasure, youth, and peace,
              Give them the blessing of increase :
              And thou, Lucina, that do'st hear
              The vows of those that children bear :
              Whenas her April hour draws near,
              Be thou then propitious there.

Chorus Juvenum. Far hence be all speech that may anger move :
    Sweet words must nourish soft and gentle love.

Chorus Omnium. Live in the love of doves, and having told
    The raven's years, go hence more ripe than old.

Nice, dainty.
Painful, painstaking.

Herrick, Robert. Works of Robert Herrick. vol II.
Alfred Pollard, ed.
London, Lawrence & Bullen, 1891. 21-23.

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