How vainly men themselves amaze To win the palm, the oak, the bays, And their incessant labours see Crowned from single herb or tree, Whose short and narrow-verged shade Does prudently their toils upbraid; While all flowers and all trees do close To weave the garlands of repose. Fair quiet have I found thee here And innocence thy sister dear? Mistaken long, I sought you then In busy companies of men; Your sacred plants, if here below, Only among the plants will grow: Society is all but rude To this delicious solitude. What wondrous life is this I lead! Ripe apples fall about my head: The luscious clusters of the vine Upon my mouth do crush their wine. The nectarine and curious peach Into my hands themselves do reach; Stumbling on melons as I pass, Ensnared with flowers, I fall on grass. Meanwhile the mind from pleasure less Withdraws into its happiness; The mind, that ocean where each kind Doth straight its own resemblance find; Yet it creates, transcending these, Far other worlds, and other seas; Annihilating all that’s made To a green thought in a green shade.
- by Andrew Marvell (1621 - 1678) [author's text not yet checked against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
Researcher for this text: Mike Pearson
This text was added to the website: 2015-02-17
Line count: 32
Word count: 188