Absent Of Thee I Languish Still

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



Absent from thee I languish still;
Then ask me not, when I return?
The straying fool 'twill plainly kill
To wish all day, all night to mourn.
  
Dear! from thine arms then let me fly,
That my fantastic mind may prove
The torments it deserves to try
That tears my fixed heart from my love.
  
When, wearied with a world of woe,
To thy safe bosom I retire
where love and peace and truth does flow,
May I contented there expire,
  
Lest, once more wandering from that heaven,
I fall on some base heart unblest,
Faithless to thee, false, unforgiven,
And lose my everlasting rest.
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Submitted on August 03, 2020

Modified on March 05, 2023

32 sec read
7

Quick analysis:

Scheme AXAX BXBX CDCD EFEF
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 560
Words 108
Stanzas 4
Stanza Lengths 4, 4, 4, 4

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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