Saturday, May 14, 2011

To Julia

Poetry by Robert Herrick. 1591–1674

Song cycle by Roger Quilter
Michael Dodaro, baritone; Hartwig Eichberg, pianist
The Bracelet
Why I tie about thy wrist,  
Julia, this silken twist;  
For what other reason is 't  
But to show thee how, in part,  
Thou my pretty captive art?  
But thy bond-slave is my heart:  
'Tis but silk that bindeth thee,  
Knap the thread and thou art free;  
But 'tis otherwise with me:  
I am bound and fast bound, so
That from thee I cannot go;  
If I could, I would not so.

So Look the Mornings

So look the mornings when the sun
paints them with fresh vermillion
So cherries blush and Kathryn Pears
and apricocks in youthful years
So corals look more lovely red
and rubies lately polished
So purest diaper doth shine
stained by the beads of claret wine
and Julia looks when she doth dress
her either cheek with bashfulness

To Daisies

Shut not so soon; the dull-eyed night  
Has not as yet begun  
To make a seizure on the light,  
Or to seal up the sun.  
No marigolds yet closèd are,
No shadows great appear;  
Nor doth the early shepherd's star  
Shine like a spangle here.  
Stay but till my Julia close  
Her life-begetting eye,
And let the whole world then dispose  
Itself to live or die.

The Night Piece

Her eyes the glow-worm lend thee,  
The shooting stars attend thee;  
And the elves also,  
Whose little eyes glow  
Like the sparks of fire, befriend thee.

No Will-o'-the-wisp mislight thee,  
Nor snake or slow-worm bite thee;  
But on, on thy way  
Not making a stay,  
Since ghost there 's none to affright thee. 
Let not the dark thee cumber:  
What though the moon does slumber?  
The stars of the night  
Will lend thee their light  
Like tapers clear without number.

Then, Julia, let me woo thee,  
Thus, thus to come unto me;  
And when I shall meet  
Thy silv'ry feet,  
My soul I'll pour into thee.

Upon Julia's Hair
Dew sat on Julia's hair,
And spangled too,
Like leaves that laden are
With trembling dew.

Or glittered to my sight,
As when the beams
Have their reflected light
Danced by the streams.

Cherry Ripe
Cherry ripe, ripe, ripe, I cry, 
Full and fair ones; come and buy. 
If so be you ask me where 
They do grow, I answer: There 
Where my Julia’s lips do smile; 
There’s the land, or cherry-isle, 
Whose plantations fully show 
All the year where cherries grow.

1 comment:

  1. Have always liked these poems :)

    I was fascinated by your comments about the opera. My girls sing in a local company. The director is a disorganized creative genius. :) I love it. It taught me to appreciate the beauty of live music, and opera, which I never knew I could like.