HENCE, ALL YOU VAIN DELIGHTS - Giles Fletcher the Younger Poems


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Hence, all you vain delights,
As short as are the nights
    Wherein you spend your folly,
There's nought in this life sweet,
If man were wise to see't
    But only melancholy,
    Oh, sweetest melancholy.
Welcome, folded arms and fixed eyes,
A sigh that piercing mortifies,
A look that's fast'ned to the ground,
A tongue chain'd up without a sound.
Fountain-heads, and pathless groves;
Places which pale passion loves,
Moonlight walks, when all the fowls
Are warmly hous'd, save bats and owls,
    A midnight bell, a parting groan,
    These are the sounds we feed upon;
Then stretch our bones in a still gloomy valley,
Nothing's so dainty sweet as lovely melancholy.