Calm was the even, and clear was the sky

By John Dryden 1631–1700 John Dryden
Calm was the even, and clear was the sky,
      And the new budding flowers did spring,
When all alone went Amyntas and I
      To hear the sweet nightingale sing;
I sate, and he laid him down by me;
      But scarcely his breath he could draw;
For when with a fear, he began to draw near,
      He was dash'd with A ha ha ha ha!

He blush'd to himself, and lay still for a while,
      And his modesty curb'd his desire;
But straight I convinc'd all his fear with a smile,
      Which added new flames to his fire.
O Silvia, said he, you are cruel,
      To keep your poor lover in awe;
Then once more he press'd with his hand to my breast,
      But was dash'd with A ha ha ha ha!

I knew 'twas his passion that caus'd all his fear;
      And therefore I pitied his case:
I whisper'd him softly, there's nobody near,
      And laid my cheek close to his face:
But as he grew bolder and bolder,
      A shepherd came by us and saw;
And just as our bliss we began with a kiss,
      He laugh'd out with A ha ha ha ha!

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Poet John Dryden 1631–1700

POET’S REGION England

Subjects Men & Women, Relationships, Nature, Landscapes & Pastorals, Love, Spring, Desire, First Love, Realistic & Complicated

Poetic Terms Common Measure, Rhymed Stanza

 John  Dryden

Biography

After John Donne and John Milton, John Dryden was the greatest English poet of the seventeenth century. After William Shakespeare and Ben Jonson, he was the greatest playwright. And he has no peer as a writer of prose, especially literary criticism, and as a translator. Other figures, such as George Herbert or Andrew Marvell or William Wycherley or William Congreve, may figure more prominently in anthologies and literary . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Men & Women, Relationships, Nature, Landscapes & Pastorals, Love, Spring, Desire, First Love, Realistic & Complicated

POET’S REGION England

Poetic Terms Common Measure, Rhymed Stanza

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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