Most of us, maybe all of us, have suffered the unique unpleasantness that is unrequited love. Edmund Waller, however, was not one to wallow in it; he took to the 17th century equivalent of social media and fired this off to the object of his affections. It is a poem not without thorns. I wonder if it worked.
Go, lovely rose!
Tell her that wastes her time and me,
That now she knows,
When I resemble her to thee,
How sweet and fair she seems to be.
Tell her that’s young,
And shuns to have her graces spied,
That hadst thou sprung
In deserts, where no men abide,
Thou must have uncommended died.
Small is the worth
Of beauty from the light retired;
Bid her come forth,
Suffer herself to be desired,
And not blush so to be admired.
Then die! that she
The common fate of all things rare
May read in thee;
How small a part of time they share
That are so wondrous sweet and fair!