Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE GARLAND, by HENRY VAUGHAN

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THE GARLAND, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Thou, who dost flow and flourish here below
Last Line: A garland, where comes neither rain, nor wind.
Alternate Author Name(s): Silurist

Thou, who dost flow and flourish here below,
To whom a falling star and nine-days' glory,
Or some frail beauty makes the bravest show,
Hark, and make use of this ensuing story.

When first my youthful, sinful age
Grew master of my ways,
Appointing error for my page,
And darkness for my days;
I flung away, and with full cry
Of wild affections, rid
In post for pleasures, bent to try
All gamesters that would bid.
I played with fire, did counsel spurn,
Made life my common stake;
But never thought that fire would burn,
Or that a soul could ache.
Glorious deceptions, gilded mists,
False joys, phantastic flights,
Pieces of sackcloth with silk-lists,
These were my prime delights.
I sought choice bowers, haunted the spring,
Culled flowers and made me posies:
Gave my fond humours their full wing,
And crowned my head with roses.
But at the height of this career
I met with a dead man,
Who noting well my vain abear,
Thus unto me began:
Desist fond fool, be not undone,
What thou hast cut today
Will fade at night, and with this sun
Quite vanish and decay.

Flowers gathered in this world, die here; if thou
Wouldst have a wreath that fades not, let them grow,
And grow for thee; who spares them here, shall find
A garland, where comes neither rain, nor wind.

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