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.
Kiss XVI
By Joannes Secundus (1511–1536)
(From Kisses; translated by John Nott, 1775)

BRIGHT as Venus’ golden star,
Fair as Dian’s silver car,
Nymph, with every charm replete,
Give me hundred kisses sweet;
Then as many kisses more        5
O’er my lips profusely pour,
As th’ insatiate bard could want,
Or his bounteous Lesbia grant;
As the vagrant Loves that stray
On thy lips’ nectareous way;        10
As the dimpling Graces spread
On thy cheeks’ carnation’d bed;
As the deaths thy lovers die;
As the conquests of thine eye,
Or the cares, and fond delights,        15
Which its changeful beam incites;
As the hopes and fears we prove,
Or th’ impassion’d sighs, in love;
As the shafts by Cupid sped,
Shafts by which my heart has bled;        20
As the countless stores that still
All his golden quiver fill.
Whisper’d plaints, and wanton wiles;
Speeches soft, and soothing smiles;
Teeth-imprinted, tell-tale blisses,        25
Intermix with all thy kisses.
So, when Zephyr’s breezy wing
Wafts the balmy breath of spring,
Turtles thus their loves repeat,
Fondly billing, murm’ring sweet,        30
While their trembling pinions tell
What delights their bosoms swell.
Kiss me, press me, till you feel
All your raptured senses reel;
Till your eyes, half-closed and dim,        35
In a dizzy transport swim,
And you murmur faintly, “Grasp me,
Swooning, in your arms oh, clasp me.”
In my fond sustaining arms
I will hold your drooping charms;        40
While the long, life-teeming kiss
Shall recall your soul to bliss;
And, as thus the vital store
From my humid lips I pour,
Till, exhausted with the play,        45
All my spirit wastes away;
Sudden, in my turn, I’ll cry,
“Oh! support me, for I die.”
To your fost’ring breast you’ll hold me,
In your warm embrace enfold me;        50
While your breath, in nectar’d gales,
O’er my sinking soul prevails;
While your kisses sweet impart
Life and rapture to my heart.
  Thus, when youth is in its prime,        55
Let’s enjoy the golden time;
For, when smiling youth is past,
Age these tender joys shall blast:
Sickness, which our bloom impairs;
Slow-consuming, painful cares;        60
Death, with dire remorseless rage;
All attend the steps of age.

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