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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. The Book of Elizabethan Verse. 1907.

Whilst It Is Prime

Edmund Spenser (1552?–1599)

FRESH Spring, the herald of love’s mighty king,

In whose cote-armour richly are displayed

All sorts of flowers the which on earth do spring

In goodly colours gloriously arrayed,—

Go to my love where she is careless laid

Yet in her Winter’s bower not well awake:

Tell her the joyous time will not be stayed

Unless she do him by the fore-lock take:

Bid her therefore herself soon ready make

To wait on Love amongst his lovely crew:

Where every one that misseth then her make

Shall be by him amerced with penance due.

Make haste therefore, sweet Love, whilst it is prime

For none can call again the passèd time.