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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
A Bride
By Sir John Suckling (1609–1642)
 
From the ‘Ballad Upon a Wedding’

THE MAID—and thereby hangs a tale,
For such a maid no Whitsun-ale
      Could ever yet produce;
No grape that’s kindly ripe, could be
So round, so plump, so soft as she,        5
      Nor half so full of juice.
 
Her finger was so small, the ring
Would not stay on which they did bring,—
      It was too wide a peck;
And to say truth (for out it must),        10
It looked like the great collar (just)
      About our young colt’s neck.
 
Her feet beneath her petticoat,
Like little mice stole in and out,
      As if they feared the light:        15
But oh, she dances such a way!
No sun upon an Easter-day
      Is half so fine a sight.
 
Her cheeks so rare a white was on,
No daisy makes comparison;        20
      Who sees them is undone:
For streaks of red were mingled there,
Such as are on a Catherine pear,
      The side that’s next the sun.
 
Her lips were red, and one was thin,        25
Compared to that was next her chin,
      Some bee had stung it newly;
But Dick, her eyes so guard her face,
I durst no more upon them gaze
      Than on the sun in July.        30
 
Her mouth so small, when she does speak,
Thou’dst swear her teeth her words did break,
      That they might passage get;
But she so handled still the matter,
They came as good as ours, or better,        35
      And are not spent a whit.
 
 
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