John Wilmot


Love and Life: A Song

All my past life is mine no more,
The flying hours are gone,
Like transitory dreams giv’ n o’ er,
Whose images are kept in store
By memory alone.

The time that is to come is not;
How can it then be mine?
The present moment’ s all my lot;
And that, as fast as it is got,
Phyllis, is only thine.

The Mock Song

I swive as well as others do,
I’ m young, not yet deformed,
My tender heart, sincere, and true,
Deserves not to be scorned.

Why Phyllis then, why will you swive,
With forty lovers more?
Can I (said she) with Nature strive,
Alas I am, alas I am a whore.

Were all my body larded o’ er,
With darts of love, so thick,
That you might find in ev’ ry pore,
A well stuck standing prick;

To His Mistress

Why dost thou shade thy lovely face? O why
Does that eclipsing hand of thine deny
The sunshine of the Sun’ s enlivening eye?

Without thy light what light remains in me?
Thou art my life; my way, my light’ s in thee;
I live, I move, and by thy beams I see.

Thou art my life-if thou but turn away
My life’ s a thousand deaths. Thou art my way-
Without thee, Love, I travel not but stray.

My light thou art-without thy glorious sight
My eyes are darken’ d with eternal night.
My Love, thou art my way, my life, my light.