Song from The Indian Emperor

By John Dryden 1631–1700 John Dryden
Ah, fading joy, how quickly art thou past!
      Yet we thy ruin haste.
As if the cares of human life were few,
      We seek out new:
And follow fate, which would too fast pursue.
See how on every bough the birds express
      In their sweet notes their happiness.
      They all enjoy and nothing spare;
But on their mother nature lay their care.
Why then should man, the lord of all below,
      Such troubles choose to know
As none of all his subjects undergo?

Hark, hark, the waters fall, fall, fall,
      And with a murmuring sound
      Dash, dash upon the ground,
         To gentle slumbers call.

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Poet John Dryden 1631–1700

POET’S REGION England

Subjects Living, Disappointment & Failure, Life Choices, Time & Brevity, Nature, Landscapes & Pastorals, Animals

 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 Living, Disappointment & Failure, Life Choices, Time & Brevity, Nature, Landscapes & Pastorals, Animals

POET’S REGION England

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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