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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. The Book of Georgian Verse. 1909.

An Ode on Miss Harriet Hanbury, Six Years Old

Sir Charles Hanbury Williams (1708–1759)

WHY should I thus employ my time,

To paint those cheeks of rosy hue?

Why should I search my brains for rhyme,

To sing those eyes of glossy blue?

The power as yet is all in vain,

Thy numerous charms, and various graces:

They only serve to banish pain,

And light up joy in parents’ faces.

But soon those eyes their strength shall feel;

Those charms their powerful sway shall find:

Youth shall in crowds before you kneel,

And own your empire o’er mankind.

Then, when on Beauty’s throne you sit,

And thousands court your wish’d-for arms;

My Muse shall stretch her utmost wit,

To sing the victories of your charms.

Charms that in time shall ne’er be lost,

At least while verse like mine endures,

And future Hanburys shall boast,

Of verse like mine, of charms like yours.

A little vain we both may be,

Since scarce another house can show,

A poet, that can sing like me;

A beauty, that can charm like you.