254. The Primrose

Robert Herrick. 1591-1674

ASK me why I send you here
This sweet Infanta of the year?
Ask me why I send to you
This primrose, thus bepearl'd with dew?
I will whisper to your ears:--
The sweets of love are mix'd with tears.

Ask me why this flower does show
So yellow-green, and sickly too?
Ask me why the stalk is weak
And bending (yet it doth not break)?
I will answer:--These discover
What fainting hopes are in a lover.

The Oxford Book of English Verse, HTML edition