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English Poetry I: From Chaucer to Gray.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.

Robert Herrick

215. To Blossoms

FAIR pledges of a fruitful tree,

Why do ye fall so fast?

Your date is not so past,

But you may stay yet here awhile

To blush and gently smile,

And go at last.

What, were ye born to be

An hour or half’s delight,

And so to bid good-night?

’Twas pity Nature brought ye forth

Merely to show your worth,

And lose you quite.

But you are lovely leaves, where we

May read how soon things have

Their end, though ne’er so brave:

And after they have shown their pride

Like you, awhile, they glide

Into the grave.