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Waller, Ayton, Cour.ey, Milton,
Byrd, Chamberlayne, Herbert, Lenham, Marvel, Dryden,
Addison, Pore, Parnell, Thomson,
DEN,—the singular sweetness and harmony of whose poetry reminds us of Spenser,-wrote some
touching sonnets in memory of his lost love, whose sudden death occurred just prior to their appointed nuptials. The poet was of noble lineage, and lived amidst the most romantic scenery, at his fine castle on the banks of the Esk. The following are his beautiful sonnets on Spring :
Sweet Spring ! thou turn’st with all thy goodly train,
Thy head with fames, thy mantle bright with Aowers ;
The clouds, for joy, in pearls weep down their showers.
Thou turn’st, sweet youth, but, ah! my pleasant hours
Do with thee turn, which turn my sweets in sours !
Delicious, wanton, amiable, fair ;
But she, whose breath embalmed thy wholesome air,
Neglected virtue, seasons go and come,
What doth it serve to see sun’s burning face?
And all the glory of that starry place?
The mountain's pride, the meadow's Aowery grace ;
The sport of foods which would themselves embrace?
The wanton merle, the nightingale's sad strains,
For what doth serve all that this world contains,
Hazlitt thought Drummond's sonnets approached as near almost as any others to the perfection of this kind of writing. Here is his Address to the Nightingale :-
Sweet bird ! that sing'st away the early hours,
Fair seasons, budding sprays, sweet-smelling Aowers:
To rocks, to springs, to rills, from leafy bowers
A stain to human sense in sin that lowers.
(Attired in sweetness) sweetly is not driven
And lift a reverent eye and thought to heaven?
HABINGTON's poem on The Firmament opens with these grand lines :
When I survey the bright celestial sphere,
So rich with jewels hung, that night
My soul her wings doth spread,
The Almighty's mysteries to read
The grave and eccentric Quarles has written some remarkable poems, equally quaint in conceit and curious in structure : for example :
To measure out the life of man: