Verse > Anthologies > Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. > Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry
Ralph Waldo Emerson, comp. (1803–1882).  Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry.  1880.
To William Sidney, on his Birthday
By Ben Jonson (1572–1637)
GIVE me my cup, but from the Thespian well,
That I may tell to Sidney, what
This day doth say,
And he may think on that
Which I do tell        5
When all the noise
Of these forced joys
Are fled and gone,
And he with his best genius left alone,
*        *        *        *        *
’Twill be exacted of your name whose son,        10
Whose nephew, whose grandchild you are;
And men will then
Say you have followed far,
When well begun:
Which must be now: they teach you how;        15
And he that stays
To live until to-morrow, hath lost two days.
The birthday shines, when logs not burn, but men.

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