John Fletcher

from Nice Valor        

Hence, all you vain delights,
As short as are the nights
    Wherein you spend your folly,
There's nought in this life sweet,
If man were wise to see't
    But only melancholy,
    Oh, sweetest melancholy.
Welcome, folded arms and fixëd eyes,
A sigh that piercing mortifies,
A look that's fastened to the ground,
A tongue chained up without a sound.
Fountain-heads, and pathless groves,
Places which pale passion loves,
Moonlight walks, when all the fowls
Are warmly housed, save bats and owls,
    A midnight bell, a parting groan,
    These are the sounds we feed upon;
Then stretch our bones in a still gloomy valley,
Nothing's so dainty sweet as lovely melancholy.

Poetry of the English Renaissance 1509-1660.
J. William Hebel and Hoyt H. Hudson, eds.
New York: F. S. Crofts & Co., 1941. 397-398.


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