by Robert Herrick

SITTING alone, as one forsook,
Close by a silver-shedding brook,
With hands held up to love, I wept ;
And after sorrows spent I slept :
Then in a vision I did see
A glorious form appear to me :
A virgin's face she had ; her dress
Was like a sprightly Spartaness.
A silver bow, with green silk strung,
Down from her comely shoulders hung :
And as she stood, the wanton air
Dangled the ringlets of her hair.
Her legs were such Diana shows
When, tucked up, she a-hunting goes ;
With buskins shortened to descry
The happy dawning of her thigh :
Which when I saw, I made access
To kiss that tempting nakedness :
But she forbade me with a wand
Of myrtle she had in her hand :
And, chiding me, said : Hence, remove,
Herrick, thou art too coarse to love.

Herrick, Robert. Works of Robert Herrick. vol I.
Alfred Pollard, ed.
London, Lawrence & Bullen, 1891. 60-61.

Titian. Death of Actaeon [Detail]. 1562.
Titian. Death of Actaeon [Detail]. 1562.
National Gallery, London.

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