Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Robert Herrick

Robert Herrick
Robert Herrick (1591 - 1674) is relatively minor 17th Century English poet. I was exposed to him during a wonderful course I took in 17th century English literature at college. While Herrick certainly isn't as critically lauded as the metaphysical poets like John Donne, I found his work refreshingly lyrical compared to the sometimes ponderous works of some of his contemporaries.  This one seems especially apropos for celebrating poetry during National Poetry Month.

His Poetry His Pillar

Only a little  more
I have to write;
Then I'll give o'er,
And bid the world good night.

'Tis but a flying minute
That I must stay,
Or linger in it;
And then I must away.

O Time, that cut'st down all,
And scarce leav'st here
Of any men that were!

How many lie forgot
In vaults beneath,
And piecemeal rot
Without a fame in death!

Behold this living stone
I rear for me,
Ne'er to be thrown
Down, envious Time, by thee.

Pillars let some set up,
If so they please;
Here is my hope,
And my pyramids.

- Robert Herrick

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