Ditty in imitation of the Spanish
Entre tanto que L'Avril

by Edward, Lord Herbert of Chirbury

NOW that the April of your youth adorns
        The Garden of your face,
Now that for you each knowing Lover mourns,
        And all seek to your Grace :
Do not repay affection with Scorns.

What though you may a matchless Beauty vaunt,
        And that all Hearts can move,
By such a power, as seemeth to inchant ?
        Yet without help of Love
Beauty no pleasure to it self can grant.

Then think each minute that you lose, a day ;
        The longest Youth is short,
The shortest Age is long ; time flies away,
        And makes us but his sport ;
And that which is not Youth's is Age's prey.

See but the bravest Horse, that prideth most,
        Though he escape the War,
Either from master to the man is lost,
        Or turn'd unto the Car,
Or else must die with being ridden Post.

Then lose not beauty, Lovers, time, and all,
        Too late your fault you see,
When that in vain you would these dayes recall ;
        Nor can you vertuous be,
When without these you have not wherewithall.

The Oxford Book of Seventeenth Century Verse.
H. J. C. Grierson and G. Bullough, eds.
Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1934. 226.

to Lord Herbert

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