1721 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Edmund Waller

Mr. Johnson, "An Invocation to Waller, sent to the Author's Mistress, in her Book" The Grove; or a Collection of Original Poems (1721) 321-23.



Waller, whose happy Genius could improve
The various Arts of Praise, and Pow'r of Love,
Who tender Thoughts could in soft Verse declare,
Soft, as the Words of parting Lovers are;
Easie, yet strong, as the delightful Chain
By which Clarinda does my Soul detain;
Be kind, Thou matchless Poet! and inspire,
Still as she reads, her Breast with equal Fire:
Warm her to Love, to Pity her incline,
And fit the Motions of her Soul to mine.
Shew her, how Scorn her Beauty will deface,
Weaken her Charms, and blemish ev'ry Grace:
Shew her how bright kind Amoret is, how fair,
So much her Mind does influence her Air.
Then tell her how I love, and tell her So,
That She may feel the Pains I undergo;
Feeling, may pity; pittying, may restore;
And call her Goodness in against her Pow'r.
Could, mighty Poet, thy successful Art,
Could it prevail o'er her obdurate Heart,
And work Consent, I'd strait thy Glory raise,
And Worship pay, where now I only praise.
This were a Conquest worthy more Renown,
Than had you haughty Sacharissa won.

Hear, kind Clarinda, what I bid him do,
But rather let me owe Your Love to You.
Forgive me that I Him my Agent made,
And, for believing You unkind, upbraid.