A Palinode by Edmund Bolton

As withereth the primrose by the river,
As fadeth summer’s sun from gliding fountains,
As vanisheth the light-blown bubble ever,
As melteth snow upon the mossy mountains:
So melts, so vanishes, so fades, so withers
The rose, the shine, the bubble and the snow
Of praise, pomp, glory, joy – which short life gathers –
Fair praise, vain pomp, sweet glory, brittle joy.
The withered primrose by the mourning river,
The faded summer’s sun from weeping fountains,
The light-blown bubble, vanishéd for ever,
The molten snow upon the naked mountains,
Are emblems that the treasures we up-lay
Soon wither, vanish, fade and melt away.

For as the snow, whose lawn did overspread
The ambitious hills, which giant-like did threat
To pierce the heaven with their aspiring head,
Naked and bare doth leave their craggy seat;
Whenas the bubble, which did empty fly
The dalliance of the undiscernéd wind,
On whose calm rolling waves it did rely,
Hath shipwreck made, where it did dalliance find;
And when the sunshine, which dissolved the snow,
Coloured the bubble with a pleasant vary,
And made the rathe and timely primrose grow,
Swarth clouds withdrawn (which longer time do tarry) –
Oh, what is praise, pomp, glory, joy, but so
As shine by fountains, bubbles, flowers or snow?

From: http://www.theguardian.com/books/booksblog/2011/may/09/poem-of-the-week-edmund-bolton

Date: 1600

By: Edmund Bolton (?1575-?1633)

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