Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > The Book of Restoration Verse
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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed.  The Book of Restoration Verse.  1910.
 
Song: ‘Ah, fading joy! how quickly art thou past!’
By John Dryden (1631–1700)
 
AH, 1 fading joy! how quickly art thou past!
  Yet we thy ruin haste.
As if the cares of human life were few,
  We seek out new:
And follow fate that does too fast pursue.        5
 
See how on every bough the birds express
  In their sweet notes their happiness.
  They all enjoy and nothing spare,
But on their mother nature lay their care:
Why then should man, the lord of all below,        10
    Such troubles choose to know
As none of all his subjects undergo?
 
Hark, hark, the waters fall, fall, fall,
  And with a murmuring sound
  Dash, dash, upon the ground,        15
    To gentle slumbers call.
 
Note 1. From The Indian Emperor, 1685. [back]
 
 
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