Standing upon2 a hill of fancies high,
And viewing round3 with curiosities eye,
Under my thoughts saw4 several landscapes lie.5
Some champains6 of delights7 I saw,8 did feed
Pleasures, as wethers fat, and ewes to breed. 5
And cows of probability, which went9
In hope’s green pastures, gave milk of content.10
Some fields, though plowed with care, unsowed did lie,
Wanting the fruitful seed of industry;11
In other fields, full crops of joys there growed, 10
Where some ripe joys12 fruition down had mowed;13
Some blasted with ill accidents looked black,14
Others, blown down with sorrow strong, lay flat.1516
Then I enclosures viewed, which close did17 lie,
Hearts hedged about with thoughts of secrecy. 15
Meadows of youth did pleasant show, and green;18
Innocency, as cowslips, grew therein.
Some ready with old age to cut for hay,
Some hay cocked high for Death to take away.
Clear rivulets of health ran here and there; 20
No sign19 of sickness in them did appear;
No stones or gravel stopped their passage free,
No weeds of pain, or slimy gouts could see.
Woods did present my view on the left side,
With20 trees of high ambition and21 great pride. 25
There shades of envy were made of dark spite,
Which did eclipse the fame of honor’s light.
Faults stood so close, that but few22 beams of praise
Could enter in; spite23 stopped up all the ways.
But leaves of prattling tongues, which ne’er lie still,24 30
Sometimes speak truth, although most lies they tell.25
Then did I26 a garden of27 beauty view,
Where sweet complexions,28 rose and lily,29 grew.
And on the banks of breasts most perfect there30
Did violets of azure veins appear;31 35
Lips of fresh gillyflowers grew up high,
Which oft the sun did kiss as he passed by;
Hands of narcissus showed most perfect white,32
Whose palms,33 fine tulips, were streaked with delight.34
Close by this gard’n35 a lovely orchard stood, 40
Wherein grew36 fruit of pleasure rare and good.
All colored eyes grew there, as bullace gray,
And damsons black, which do taste best, some say.
Others there were of the pure bluest grape,
And pear-plum faces, of an oval shape, 45
And cheeks37 of apricots made red with heat,
And cherry lips, which most delight to eat.
When I had38 viewed this landscape round about,
I fell from39 fancy’s hill, and so wit’s40 sight went out.
- A Landscape] Nature’s Landskip. 1664; Nature’s Landskip. 1668
- upon] on 1664, 1668
- And viewing round] Viewing about 1653
- Under my thoughts saw] Saw 1653
- lie.] under my Thoughts to lye. 1653
- Some champains] In Champains 1664, 1668
- delights] delight, 1664; Delight, 1668
- I saw,] where there 1653
- cows of probability, which went] Pastures of green Hopes, wherein Cowes went, 1653
- In hope’s green pastures, gave milk of content] Of Probability give Milk of sweet content. 1653
- of industry;] Industry. 1653
- ripe joys] of them 1664; of them, 1668
- mowed;] mov’d. 1653
- blasted with ill accidents looked black,] by Ill accidents were Blasted found, 1664; by ill accidents, were Blasted found: 1668
- Others, blown down with sorrow strong, lay flat.] Some blown with Sorrow down, lay on the Ground; 1664; Some Blown with Sorrow down, lay on the Ground. 1668
- A marginal note in Cavendish’s 1653 text reads: “As ripe corn will do with the wind.” This note does not appear in 1664 or 1668.
- I enclosures viewed, which close did] did I view Inclosures close to 1653
- Meadows of youth did pleasant show, and green;] Fresh Meadow of green Youth did pleasant seem, 1653
- sign] Mind 1653
- With] Where 1653
- and] grew 1653
- that but few] not many 1653
- in; spite] and Spight 1664; and Spight 1668
- which ne’er lie still,] I did espy, 1664, 1668
- Sometimes speak truth, although most lies they tell.] Which sometimes Truth, for th’most part tell a Lye. 1664; Which sometimes Truth, for the most part tell a Lye. 1668
- did I] I 1664, 1668
- of] did of 1664, 1668
- This word could possibly also be modernized as “complexion’s,” or as “complexions’.”
- sweet complexions, rose and lily,] Complexions of Roses, and Lillies 1653
- on the banks of breasts most perfect there] Violets of blew Veines there grow’d, 1653
- Did violets of azure veins appear;] Upon the Banks of Breasts most perfect shew’d. 1653
- showed most perfect white,] perfect white were set, 1653
- The word “palms” could possibly also be modernized as “palm’s,” or as “palms’.”
- Whose palms, fine tulips, were streaked with delight.] The Palmes were curious Tulips, finely streakt. 1653
- Close by this gard’n] And by this Garden 1653
- grew] was 1664, 1668
- And cheeks] Cheeks 1653
- When I had] But having 1664; But, having 1668
- I fell from] And left this 1664, 1668
- and so wit’s] Wit’s 1664; Wit’s 1668