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.
 
Nature
By Ben Jonson (1572–1637)
 
HOW young and fresh am I to-night,
To see’t kept day by so much light,
And twelve of my sons stand in their Maker’s sight!
Help, wise Prometheus, something must be done,
To show they are the creatures of the sun.        5
        That each to other
        Is a brother,
And Nature here no stepdame, but a mother.
Come forth, come forth, prove all the numbers then,
That make perfection up, and may absolve you men.        10
But show thy winding ways and arts,
Thy risings, and thy timely starts
Of stealing fire from ladies’ eyes and hearts.
Those softer circles are the young man’s heaven,
And there more orbs and planets are than seven.        15
        To know whose motion
        Were a notion
As worthy of youth’s study, as devotion.
Come forth, come forth! prove all the time will gain,
For Nature bids the best, and never bade in vain.        20
 
 
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