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Sunday, April 09, 2006 

Before everything devolves:

I was going to save this for next month, but let's get some culture up in here before its too late

Nay, profanation to keep in,
Whereas a thousand virgins on this day
Spring, sooner than the lark, to fetch in May.

Rise and put on your foliage, and be seen
To come forth, like the spring-time, fresh and green,
And sweet as Flora. Take no care
For jewels for your gown or hair :
Fear not ; the leaves will strew
Gems in abundance upon you :
Besides, the childhood of the day has kept,
Against you come, some orient pearls unwept ;
Come and receive them while the light
Hangs on the dew-locks of the night :
And Titan on the eastern hill
Retires himself, or else stands still
Till you come forth. Wash, dress, be brief in praying :
Few beads are best when once we go a-Maying.

Come, my Corinna, come ; and, coming, mark
How each field turns a street, each street a park
Made green and trimm'd with trees : see how
Devotion gives each house a bough
Or branch : each porch, each door ere this
An ark, a tabernacle is,
Made up of white-thorn neatly interwove ;
As if here were those cooler shades of love.
Can such delights be in the street
And open fields and we not see't ?
Come, we'll abroad ; and let's obey
The proclamation made for May :
And sin no more, as we have done, by staying ;
But, my Corinna, come, let's go a-Maying.

There's not a budding boy or girl this day
But is got up, and gone to bring in May.
A deal of youth, ere this, is come
Back, and with white-thorn laden home.
Some have despatch'd their cakes and cream
Before that we have left to dream :
And some have wept, and woo'd, and plighted troth,
And chose their priest, ere we can cast off sloth :
Many a green-gown has been given ;
Many a kiss, both odd and even :
Many a glance too has been sent
From out the eye, love's firmament ;
Many a jest told of the keys betraying
This night, and locks pick'd, yet we're not a-Maying.

Come, let us go while we are in our prime* ;
And take the harmless folly of the time.
We shall grow old apace, and die
Before we know our liberty.
Our life is short, and our days run
As fast away as does the sun ;
And, as a vapour or a drop of rain
Once lost, can ne'er be found again,
So when or you or I are made
A fable, song, or fleeting shade,
All love, all liking, all delight
Lies drowned with us in endless night.
Then while time serves, and we are but decaying,
Come, my Corinna, come, let's go a-Maying.

*emphasis added



mind if I sit here next to you [and slightly displaced in time] at the keyboard, Nora?
We've never met but since that pesty Shaw yoked us all into this blog, well, hi!

Now I could comment but being able to edit instead is edgy and courts dysfunction
and Shaw probably likes to preside over such a melee.

As to the Herrick. One of my early [gradeschool] influences. "times winged chariot..."
and all that really appealed to my unhealthy and unusual sense that time was short
and perhaps my best years had already been. The poem you put up here makes
me curious to read more Herrick and see if the "Quit living like you had a spare life
or two for when you are done fretting over this one" theme is all the man had.
----

No problem. Nice to have you here, um... you.

I love it that you were moping around grade school wondering if your best years had already been. Some of us are just born in an acute state of nostalgia.

Herrick was an interesting poet. He was a priest, a friend (and follower) of Ben Jonson, and writing when Puritanism was sweeping England. The poems of his that I've read tend towards celebrations of seasonal rites (like going a maying and wasailling) that were soon discouraged. In that, as you noted, is the call to enjoy the earth as it is, rather than holding out for the heaven to come. In Herrick's cosmology, nature isn't viewed as a punishing force or corrupted by original sin (as it was by the Puritans), but as something to be celebrated. So there was a political edge to his call for the reader to just have fun and enjoy the world already.

But let's have some more of that gloomy passage of time...

To Daffadills

Faire Daffadills, we weep to see
  You haste away so soone;
As yet the early-rising Sun
  Has not attain'd his Noone.
        Stay, stay
    Until the hasting day
        Has run
    But to the Even-song;
And, having pray'd together, we
    Will go with you along.

We have short time to stay, as you,
  We have as short a spring;
As quick a growth to meet decay,
  As you, or anything.
        We die
    As your hours do, and dry
        Away
    Like to the summer's raine;
Or as the pearls of morning's dew,
    Ne'er to be found again.
Entry By Nora

I'm all for leaving while the night is young, Nora. See you, all, in sundry cyberspaces, the silence of the typed life.

This song has been haunting me for a week, now.


The Weepies, World Spins Madly On

I woke up and wished that I was dead
With an aching in my head
I lay motionless in bed
I thought of you
And where you’d gone
Let the world spin madly on

And everything that I’d said I’d do
Like make the world brand new
And take the time for you
Just got lost
And stepped right through the dawn
And the world spins madly on.

And I let the day go round
And I always say good bye
I watch the stars from my windowsill
The whole world is moving and I’m standing still

I woke up and wished that I was dead
With an aching in my head
I lay motionless in bed
The night is here
And the day is gone
And the world spins madly on
Thought of you
And where you’d gone
And the world spins madly on

Oops -- I didn't mean to end anything, just interrupt the devolution with a nice poem. But if that's what everyone wants, then let it be a valediction.

I wouldn't take the reaction of these Strayz seriously. . .bunch of slackers. . ..

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