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.
The Forward Love
By Sir Charles Sedley (1639–1701)
(Works, 1722)

TUSH! never tell me I’m too young
  For loving, or too green;
She stays at least seven Years too long,
  That’s wedded at Eighteen.
Lambs bring forth Lambs, and Doves bring Doves,        5
  As soon they’ve begotten:
Then why should ladies linger Loves,
  As if not ripe till rotten?
Grey Hairs are fitter for the Grave
  Than for the bridal Bed,        10
What Pleasure can a Lover have
  In a withered Maidenhead?
Nature’s exalted in our Time,
  And what our Grandames then
At Four and Twenty scarce could climb,        15
  We can arrive at Ten.

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