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.
 
The Nightingale
By Richard Barnfield (1574–1627)
 
AS it fell upon a day
In the merry month of May,
Sitting in a pleasant shade
Which a grove of myrtles made,
Beasts did leap, and birds did sing,        5
Trees did grow, and plants did spring,
Every thing did banish moan,
Save the nightingale alone.
She, poor bird, as all forlorn,
Leaned her breast against a thorn,        10
And there sung the dolefulest ditty,
That to hear it was great pity.
Fie, fie, fie! now would she cry;
Tereu, tereu, by and by:
That to hear her so complain        15
Scarce I could from tears refrain;
For her griefs so lively shown
Made me think upon mine own.
Ah, thought I, thou mourn’st in vain,
None takes pity on thy pain:        20
Senseless trees, they cannot hear thee,
Ruthless beasts, they will not cheer thee;
King Pandiva, he is dead,
All thy friends are lapp’d in lead:
All thy fellow-birds do sing        25
Careless of thy sorrowing;
Even so, poor bird, like thee,
None alive will pity me.
 
 
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