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

Art above Nature: To Julia

Robert Herrick (1591–1674)

WHEN I behold a forest spread

With silken trees upon thy head,

And when I see that other dress

Of flowers set in comeliness;

When I behold another grace

In the ascent of curious lace,

Which like a pinnacle doth shew

The top, and the top-gallant too;

Then, when I see thy tresses bound

Into an oval, square, or round,

And knit in knots far more than I

Can tell by tongue, or true-love tie;

Next, when those lawny films I see

Play with a wild civility,

And all those airy silks to flow,

Alluring me, and tempting so:

I must confess mine eye and heart

Dotes less on Nature than on Art.