The Spring

By Thomas Carew 1595–1640 Thomas Carew
Now that the winter's gone, the earth hath lost
Her snow-white robes, and now no more the frost
Candies the grass, or casts an icy cream
Upon the silver lake or crystal stream;
But the warm sun thaws the benumbed earth,
And makes it tender; gives a sacred birth
To the dead swallow; wakes in hollow tree
The drowsy cuckoo, and the humble-bee.
Now do a choir of chirping minstrels bring
In triumph to the world the youthful Spring.
The valleys, hills, and woods in rich array
Welcome the coming of the long'd-for May.
Now all things smile, only my love doth lour;
Nor hath the scalding noonday sun the power
To melt that marble ice, which still doth hold
Her heart congeal'd, and makes her pity cold.
The ox, which lately did for shelter fly
Into the stall, doth now securely lie
In open fields; and love no more is made
By the fireside, but in the cooler shade
Amyntas now doth with his Chloris sleep
Under a sycamore, and all things keep
Time with the season; only she doth carry
June in her eyes, in her heart January.

Discover this poem’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Poet Thomas Carew 1595–1640

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD 17th Century

Subjects Nature, Spring, Relationships, Love, Landscapes & Pastorals, Break-ups & Vexed Love, Realistic & Complicated

Poetic Terms Pastoral, Couplet

 Thomas  Carew

Biography

Thomas Carew was the poetic arbiter elegantiae of the court of Charles I. He gave one last witty spin to the tradition of Petrarchan lyric, polishing and resetting the traditional conceits of love poetry for an increasingly sophisticated and aristocratic audience. Carew penned the most notorious erotic poem of the seventeenth century, "A Rapture," as well as what is generally regarded as the most accomplished of the Caroline . . .

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Nature, Spring, Relationships, Love, Landscapes & Pastorals, Break-ups & Vexed Love, Realistic & Complicated

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD 17th Century

Poetic Terms Pastoral, Couplet

Report a problem with this poem

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.