Song to Celia

Ben Johnson (1572-1637)

One of the poems I still remember from my high school days. It was an assignment in our English Literature class which we had to memorize and recite in front of class the following week. What a harrowing experience, since the girl I liked was  sitting not far from the front.  lol.  Now that I’m a lot more mature, looking back, I should have looked into her eyes while reciting this.  Instead, I stared blankly at the rear wall.  Sigh.

Ben Johnson (1572-1637)

Ben Johnson (1572-1637)

Song to Celia (published year 1616)
BY BEN JONSON (1572–1637)

Drink to me only with thine eyes,
And I will pledge with mine;
Or leave a kiss but in the cup,
And I’ll not look for wine.
The thirst that from the soul doth rise
Doth ask a drink divine;
But might I of Jove’s nectar sup,
I would not change for thine.

I sent thee late a rosy wreath,
Not so much honouring thee
As giving it a hope, that there
It could not withered be.
But thou thereon didst only breathe,
And sent’st it back to me;
Since when it grows, and smells, I swear,
Not of itself, but thee.