Verse > Anthologies > Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. > Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry
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Ralph Waldo Emerson, comp. (1803–1882).  Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry.  1880.
 
Corinna’s going a-Maying
By Robert Herrick (1591–1674)
 
GET up, get up, for shame; the blooming Morn
Upon her wings presents the god unshorn.
  See how Aurora throws her fair
  Fresh-quilted colors through the air;
  Get up, sweet slug-a-bed, and see        5
  The dew bespangling herb and tree.
Each flower has wept, and bow’d toward the east,
Above an hour since, yet you not drest,
  Nay! not so much as out of bed;
  When all the birds have matins said,        10
  And sung their thankful hymns; ’tis sin,
  Nay, profanation to keep in,
When as a thousand virgins on this day
Spring, sooner than the lark, to fetch in May.
 
Rise, and put on your foliage, and be seen        15
To come forth, like the spring-time fresh and green,
  And sweet as Flora. Take no care
  For jewels for your gowne or haire;
  Feare not, the leaves will strew
  Gems in abundance upon you;        20
Besides, the childhood of the day has kept,
Against you come, some orient pearls unwept.
  Come, and receive them while the light
  Hangs on the dew-locks of the night;
  And Titan on the eastern hill        25
  Retires himself, or else stands still
Till you come forth. Wash, dresse, be briefe in praying;
Few beads are best, when once we go a-Maying.
 
Come, my Corinna, come; and coming, mark
How each field turns a street, each street a park        30
  Made green, and trimm’d with trees; see how
  Devotion gives each house a bough,
  Or branch; each porch, each doore, ere this,
  An ark, a tabernacle is,
Made up of white-thorn neatly interwove;        35
As if here were those cooler shades of love.
And sin no more, as we have done, by staying;
But, my Corinna, come, let’s go a-Maying.
 
 
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