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


Thomas Lodge (1558–1625)

LIKE to the clear in highest sphere

Where all imperial glory shines,

Of selfsame colour is her hair

Whether unfolded or in twines

Heigh ho, fair Rosaline!

Her eyes are sapphires set in snow,

Resembling heaven by every wink;

The gods do fear whenas they glow,

And I do tremble when I think

Heigh ho, would she were mine!

Her cheeks are like the blushing cloud

That beautifies Aurora’s face,

Or like the silver crimson shroud

That Phœbus’ smiling looks doth grace:

Heigh ho, fair Rosaline!

Her lips are like two budded roses

Whom ranks of lilies neighbour nigh,

Within whose bounds she balm encloses

Apt to entice a deity:

Heigh ho, would she were mine!

Her neck is like a stately tower

Where Love himself imprison’d lies,

To watch for glances every hour

From her divine and sacred eyes:

Heigh ho, fair Rosaline!

Her paps are centres of delight,

Her breasts are orbs of heavenly frame,

Where Nature moulds the dew of light

To feed perfection with the same:

Heigh ho, would she were mine!

With orient pearl, with ruby red,

With marble white, with sapphire blue,

Her body every way is fed,

Yet soft in touch and sweet in view:

Heigh ho, fair Rosaline!

Nature herself her shape admires;

The gods are wounded in her sight;

And Love forsakes his heavenly fires

And at her eyes his brand doth light:

Heigho ho, would she were mine!

Then muse not, Nymphs, though I bemoan

The absence of fair Rosaline,

Since for a fair there’s fairer none,

Nor for her virtues so divine:

Heigh ho, fair Rosaline!

Heigh ho, my heart! would God that she were mine!