Madrigal: "Like the Idalian queen"

By William Drummond of Hawthornden 1585–1649 William Drummond of Hawthornden
Like the Idalian queen,
Her hair about her eyne,
With neck and breast’s ripe apples to be seen,
At first glance of the morn
In Cyprus’ gardens gathering those fair flowers
Which of her blood were born,
I saw, but fainting saw, my paramours.
The Graces naked danced about the place,
The winds and trees amazed
With silence on her gazed,
The flowers did smile, like those upon her face;
And as their aspen stalks those fingers band,
That she might read my case,
A hyacinth I wished me in her hand.

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Poet William Drummond of Hawthornden 1585–1649

POET’S REGION Scotland

SCHOOL / PERIOD 17th Century

Subjects Love, Infatuation & Crushes

Biography

In his book collecting as in his poetry, William Drummond was conservative and imitative. As reported in Notes of Ben Jonson's Conversations with William Drummond of Hawthornden (1842), Jonson said that Drummond's verses were good, "Save that they smelled too much of the Schools, and were not after the fancie of the time." In an undated letter to Dr. Arthur Johnston, Drummond expressed his objections to innovations in poetry:

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Love, Infatuation & Crushes

POET’S REGION Scotland

SCHOOL / PERIOD 17th Century

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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