Song to a Fair Young Lady Going out of Town in the Spring by John Dryden


Ask not the cause why sullen spring
So long delays her flow’rs to bear;
Why warbling birds forget to sing,
And winter storms invert the year?
Chloris is gone; and Fate provides
To make it spring where she resides.

Chloris is gone, the cruel fair;
She cast not back a pitying eye:
But left her lover in despair,
To sigh, to languish, and to die:
Ah, how can those fair eyes endure
To give the wounds they will not cure!

Great god of Love, why hast thou made
A face that can all hearts command,
That all religions can invade,
And change the laws of ev’ry land?
Where thou hadst plac’d such pow’r before,
Thou shouldst have made her mercy more.

When Chloris to the temple comes,
Adoring crowds before her fall;
She can restore the dead from tombs,
And ev’ry life but mine recall.
I only am by love design’d
To be the victim for mankind.

John Dryden



Russell Boyle is a mathematics teacher, writer, and poet. His poetry anthologies are titled The Beginning, Footprints and Loneliness. Russell is the author of the Year 7 to 8 Mathematics Short-Answer Tasks, the Year 7 to 10 Mathematics Multiple-Choice Tasks, the Year 9 Extended-Response Tasks, the solutions to the Year 12 VCAA Mathematics Exams and the Web-Programming For Beginners series of courses. Sample poems and questions may be downloaded from
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