"Stanzas to Flora." by Mary Darby Robinson (1758-1800)
LET OTHERS wreaths of ROSES twine
With scented leaves of EGLANTINE;
Enamell'd buds and gaudy flow'rs,
The pride of FLORA'S painted bow'rs;
Such common charms shall ne'er be wove
Around the brows of him I LOVE.
Fair are their beauties for a day,
But swiftly do they fade away;
Each PINK sends forth its choicest sweet
AURORA'S warm embrace to meet;
And each inconstant breeze, that blows,
Steals essence from the musky ROSE.
Then lead me, FLORA, to some vale,
Where, shelter'd from the fickle gale,
In modest garb, amidst the gloom,
The constant MYRTLE sheds perfume;
And hid secure from prying eyes,
In spotless beauty BLOOMS and DIES.
And should its velvet leaves dispense
No pow'rful odours to the sense;
Should no proud tints of gaudy hue,
With dazz'ling lustre pain the view;
Still shall its verdant boughs defy
The northern blast, and wintry sky.
AH, VENUS ! should this hand of mine
Steal from thy tree a wreath divine,
Assist me, while I fondly bind
Two Hearts, by holy FRIENDSHIP join'd;
Thy cherish'd branches then shall prove,
Sacred to TRUTH, as well as LOVE.