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Best Famous Robert Herrick Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Robert Herrick poems. This is a select list of the best famous Robert Herrick poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Robert Herrick poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of Robert Herrick poems.

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Written by Robert Herrick |

To Find God

Weigh me the fire; or canst thou find
A way to measure out the wind?
Distinguish all those floods that are
Mixed in that wat'ry theater,
And taste thou them as saltless there,
As in their channel first they were.
Tell me the people that do keep Within the kingdoms of the deep; Or fetch me back that cloud again, Beshivered into seeds of rain.
Tell me the motes, dust, sands, and spears Of corn, when summer shakes his ears; Show me that world of stars, and whence They noiseless spill their influence.
This if thou canst; then show me Him That rides the glorious cherubim.

Written by Robert Herrick |

AMBITION

 In man, ambition is the common'st thing;
Each one by nature loves to be a king.

Written by Robert Herrick |

LOVE WHAT IT IS

 Love is a circle, that doth restless move
In the same sweet eternity of Love.

Written by Robert Herrick |

THE COUNTRY LIFE:

 TO THE HONOURED MR ENDYMION PORTER, GROOM OF
THE BED-CHAMBER TO HIS MAJESTY

Sweet country life, to such unknown,
Whose lives are others', not their own!
But serving courts and cities, be
Less happy, less enjoying thee.
Thou never plough'st the ocean's foam To seek and bring rough pepper home: Nor to the Eastern Ind dost rove To bring from thence the scorched clove: Nor, with the loss of thy loved rest, Bring'st home the ingot from the West.
No, thy ambition's master-piece Flies no thought higher than a fleece: Or how to pay thy hinds, and clear All scores: and so to end the year: But walk'st about thine own dear bounds, Not envying others' larger grounds: For well thou know'st, 'tis not th' extent Of land makes life, but sweet content.
When now the cock (the ploughman's horn) Calls forth the lily-wristed morn; Then to thy corn-fields thou dost go, Which though well soil'd, yet thou dost know That the best compost for the lands Is the wise master's feet, and hands.
There at the plough thou find'st thy team, With a hind whistling there to them: And cheer'st them up, by singing how The kingdom's portion is the plough.
This done, then to th' enamell'd meads Thou go'st; and as thy foot there treads, Thou seest a present God-like power Imprinted in each herb and flower: And smell'st the breath of great-eyed kine, Sweet as the blossoms of the vine.
Here thou behold'st thy large sleek neat Unto the dew-laps up in meat: And, as thou look'st, the wanton steer, The heifer, cow, and ox draw near, To make a pleasing pastime there.
These seen, thou go'st to view thy flocks Of sheep, safe from the wolf and fox, And find'st their bellies there as full Of short sweet grass, as backs with wool: And leav'st them, as they feed and fill, A shepherd piping on a hill.
For sports, for pageantry, and plays, Thou hast thy eves, and holydays: On which the young men and maids meet, To exercise their dancing feet: Tripping the comely country Round, With daffadils and daisies crown'd.
Thy wakes, thy quintels, here thou hast, Thy May-poles too with garlands graced; Thy Morris-dance; thy Whitsun-ale; Thy shearing-feast, which never fail.
Thy harvest home; thy wassail bowl, That's toss'd up after Fox i' th' hole: Thy mummeries; thy Twelve-tide kings And queens; thy Christmas revellings: Thy nut-brown mirth, thy russet wit, And no man pays too dear for it.
-- To these, thou hast thy times to go And trace the hare i' th' treacherous snow: Thy witty wiles to draw, and get The lark into the trammel net: Thou hast thy cockrood, and thy glade To take the precious pheasant made: Thy lime-twigs, snares, and pit-falls then To catch the pilfering birds, not men.
--O happy life! if that their good The husbandmen but understood! Who all the day themselves do please, And younglings, with such sports as these: And lying down, have nought t' affright Sweet Sleep, that makes more short the night.
CAETERA DESUNT--

Written by Robert Herrick |

His Meditation Upon Death

 BE those few hours, which I have yet to spend, 
Blest with the meditation of my end; 
Though they be few in number, I'm content; 
If otherwise, I stand indifferent, 
Nor makes it matter, Nestor's years to tell, 
If man lives long, and if he live not well.
A multitude of days still heaped on Seldom brings order, but confusion.
Might I make choice, long life should be with-stood; Nor would I care how short it were, if good; Which to effect, let ev'ry passing bell Possess my thoughts, next comes my doleful knell; And when the night persuades me to my bed, I'll think I'm going to be buried; So shall the blankets which come over me Present those turfs, which once must cover me; And with as firm behaviour I will meet The sheet I sleep in, as my winding-sheet.
When Sleep shall bathe his body in mine eyes, I will believe, that then my body dies; And if I chance to wake, and rise thereon, I'll have in mind my resurrection, Which must produce me to that Gen'ral Doom, To which the peasant, so the prince must come, To hear the Judge give sentence on the Throne, Without the least hope of affection.
Tears, at that day, shall make but weak defense, When Hell and horror fright the conscience.
Let me, though late, yet at the last, begin To shun the least temptation to a sin; Though to be tempted be no sin, until Man to th'alluring object gives his will.
Such let my life assure me, when my breath Goes thieving from me, I am safe in death; Which is the height of comfort, when I fall, I rise triumphant in my funeral.

Written by Robert Herrick |

His Prayer To Ben Jonson

 When I a verse shall make,
Know I have pray'd thee,
For old religion's sake,
Saint Ben to aid me.
Make the way smooth for me, When I, thy Herrick, Honouring thee, on my knee Offer my lyric.
Candles I'll give to thee, And a new altar, And thou, Saint Ben, shalt be Writ in my psalter.

Written by Robert Herrick |

THE KISS: A DIALOGUE

 1 Among thy fancies, tell me this,
What is the thing we call a kiss?
2 I shall resolve ye what it is:--

It is a creature born and bred
Between the lips, all cherry-red,
By love and warm desires fed,--
CHOR.
And makes more soft the bridal bed.
2 It is an active flame, that flies First to the babies of the eyes, And charms them there with lullabies,-- CHOR.
And stills the bride, too, when she cries.
2 Then to the chin, the cheek, the ear, It frisks and flies, now here, now there: 'Tis now far off, and then 'tis near,-- CHOR.
And here, and there, and every where.
1 Has it a speaking virtue? 2 Yes.
1 How speaks it, say? 2 Do you but this,-- Part your join'd lips, then speaks your kiss; CHOR.
And this Love's sweetest language is.
1 Has it a body? 2 Ay, and wings, With thousand rare encolourings; And as it flies, it gently sings-- CHOR.
Love honey yields, but never stings.

Written by Robert Herrick |

TO THE WILLOW-TREE

 Thou art to all lost love the best,
The only true plant found,
Wherewith young men and maids distrest
And left of love, are crown'd.
When once the lover's rose is dead Or laid aside forlorn, Then willow-garlands, 'bout the head, Bedew'd with tears, are worn.
When with neglect, the lover's bane, Poor maids rewarded be, For their love lost their only gain Is but a wreath from thee.
And underneath thy cooling shade, When weary of the light, The love-spent youth, and love-sick maid, Come to weep out the night.

Written by Robert Herrick |

AN HYMN TO THE MUSES

 Honour to you who sit
Near to the well of wit,
And drink your fill of it!

Glory and worship be
To you, sweet Maids, thrice three,
Who still inspire me;

And teach me how to sing
Unto the lyric string,
My measures ravishing!

Then, while I sing your praise,
My priest-hood crown with bays
Green to the end of days!

Written by Robert Herrick |

A Lyric to Mirth

 While the milder fates consent,
Let's enjoy our merriment :
Drink, and dance, and pipe, and play ;
Kiss our dollies night and day :
Crowned with clusters of the vine,
Let us sit, and quaff our wine.
Call on Bacchus, chant his praise ; Shake the thyrse, and bite the bays : Rouse Anacreon from the dead, And return him drunk to bed : Sing o'er Horace, for ere long Death will come and mar the song : Then shall Wilson and Gotiere Never sing or play more here.

Written by Robert Herrick |

POVERTY AND RICHES

 Who with a little cannot be content,
Endures an everlasting punishment.

Written by Robert Herrick |

PARDONS

 Those ends in war the best contentment bring,
Whose peace is made up with a pardoning.

Written by Robert Herrick |

AN ODE FOR BEN JONSON

 Ah Ben!
Say how or when
Shall we, thy guests,
Meet at those lyric feasts,
Made at the Sun,
The Dog, the Triple Tun;
Where we such clusters had,
As made us nobly wild, not mad?
And yet each verse of thine
Out-did the meat, out-did the frolic wine.
My Ben! Or come again, Or send to us Thy wit's great overplus; But teach us yet Wisely to husband it, Lest we that talent spend; And having once brought to an end That precious stock,--the store Of such a wit the world should have no more.

Written by Robert Herrick |

BURIAL

 Man may want land to live in; but for all
Nature finds out some place for burial.

Written by Robert Herrick |

FOUR THINGS MAKE US HAPPY HERE

 Health is the first good lent to men;
A gentle disposition then:
Next, to be rich by no by-ways;
Lastly, with friends t' enjoy our days.