A Song Of A Young Lady To Her Ancient Lover

John Wilmot 1647 (Ditchley, Oxfordshire) – 1680 (Woodstock, Oxfordshire)



Ancient Person, for whom I
All the flattering youth defy,
Long be it e'er thou grow old,
Aching, shaking, crazy cold;
But still continue as thou art,
Ancient Person of my heart.
  
On thy withered lips and dry,
Which like barren furrows lie,
Brooding kisses I will pour,
Shall thy youthful heart restore,
Such kind show'rs in autumn fall,
And a second spring recall;
Nor from thee will ever part,
Ancient Person of my heart.
  
Thy nobler parts, which but to name
In our sex would be counted shame,
By ages frozen grasp possest,
From their ice shall be released,
And, soothed by my reviving hand,
In former warmth and vigour stand.
All a lover's wish can reach,
For thy joy my love shall teach;
And for thy pleasure shall improve
All that art can add to love.
Yet still I love thee without art,
Ancient Person of my heart.
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Submitted on August 03, 2020

Modified on March 05, 2023

46 sec read
8

Quick analysis:

Scheme aabbcC aaddeecC ffbxgghhxxcC
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 797
Words 152
Stanzas 3
Stanza Lengths 6, 8, 12

John Wilmot

John Wilmot (1 April 1647 – 26 July 1680) was an English poet and courtier of King Charles II's Restoration court. The Restoration reacted against the "spiritual authoritarianism" of the Puritan era. Rochester embodied this new era, and he became as well known for his rakish lifestyle as his poetry, although the two were often interlinked. He died as a result of venereal disease at the age of 33. Rochester was described by his contemporary Andrew Marvell as "the best English satirist," and he is generally considered to be the most considerable poet and the most learned among the Restoration wits. His poetry was widely censored during the Victorian era, but enjoyed a revival from the 1920s onwards, with reappraisals from noted literary figures such as Graham Greene and Ezra Pound. The critic Vivian de Sola Pinto linked Rochester's libertinism to Hobbesian materialism. During his lifetime, Rochester was best known for A Satyr Against Reason and Mankind, and it remains among his best-known works today.  more…

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