WHAT sweet relief the showers to thirsty plants we see,
What dear delight the blooms to bees, my true
As fresh and lusty Ver foul Winter doth exceed
As morning bright, with scarlet sky, doth
pass the evenings
As mellow pears above the crabs esteemàd be
So doth my love surmount
them all, whom yet I hap to see!
The oak shall olives bear, the lamb the lion fray,1
The owl shall match
the nightingale in tuning of her lay.
Or I my love let slip out of mine entire heart,
So deep reposàd in my
breast is she for her desart!
For many blessàd gifts, O happy, happy land!
Where Mars and Pallas strive to
make their glory most to stand!
Yet, land, more is thy bliss that, in this cruel age,
A Venusimp thou hast
brought forth, so steadfast and so sage.
Among the Muses Nine a tenth if Jove would make,
And to the
Graces Three a fourth, her would Apollo take.
Let some for honour hunt, and hoard the massy gold:
her so I may live and die, my weal cannot be told.