Thursday, August 24, 2017


ROBERT HERRICK whose 426th birth anniversary falls today was a seventeenth century poet . He was one of the Cavalier poets and belonged to a group that prided itself in being called Ben’s sons , so enamoured were they of the genius and poetry of Ben Jonson , a classical poet. A prolific poet he wrote about 2500 poems , some of which are included in his collection known as ‘Hesperides' . Not acknowledged as a great poet in his own time and the eighteenth century, his poetic genius came to be discovered in the nineteenth century and he is now
counted amongst the greats of English poetry till today. His poetry is romantic and sensual, sometimes alleged to be bordering on the obscene .Though he wrote of love , he never married and died a bachelor. The following two specimens of his poetry seem contradictory inas much as while in one he exhorts young maidens to marry while there is still time, in the other he reiterates his resolve not to marry .
“Gather ye rosebuds while ye may,
Old Time is still a-flying;
And this same flower that smiles today
Tomorrow will be dying.
The glorious lamp of heaven, the sun,
The higher he’s a-getting,
The sooner will his race be run,
And nearer he’s to setting.
That age is best which is the first,
When youth and blood are warmer;
But being spent, the worse, and worst
Times still succeed the former.
Then be not coy, but use your time,
And while ye may, go marry;
For having lost but once your prime,
You may forever tarry”.
“A Bachelor I will
Live as I have liv’d still,
And never take a wife
To crucify my life”
Our humble tributes !

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