Verse > Anthologies > T. R. Smith, ed. > Poetica Erotica: A Collection of Rare and Curious Amatory Verse
T. R. Smith, comp.  Poetica Erotica: Rare and Curious Amatory Verse.  1921–22.
Cloris, Now Thou Art Fled away
(From Sportive Wit: the Muses’ Merriment, 1656)

CLORIS, since thou art gone astray,
Amyntas Shepherd’s fled away;
And all the joys he wont to spy
I’ th’ pretty babies of thine eye,
Are gone; and she hath none to say        5
But who can help what will away, will away?
The Green on which it was his chance
To have her hand first in a dance,
Among the merry Maiden-crew,
Now making her nought but sigh and rue        10
The time she ere had cause to say
Ah, who can help what will away, will away?
The Lawn with which she wont to deck
And circle in her whiter neck;
Her Apron lies behind the door;        15
The strings won’t reach now as before:
Which makes her oft cry well-a-day:
But who can help what will away?
He often swore that he would leave me,
Ere of my heart he could bereave me:        20
But when the Sign was in the tail,
He knew poor Maiden-flesh was frail;
And laughs now I have nought to say,
But who can help what will away.
But let the blame upon me lie,        25
I had no heart him to deny:
Had I another Maidenhead,
I’d lose it ere I went to bed:
For what can all the world more say,
Than who can help what will away?        30

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