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A poem on kisses
Posted by: Sohail (
Date: May 29, 2003 12:14PM

This is a reasonably well known poem, and I'm pretty sure its by Herrick, but a search of this and all the other sites didn't find a thing.

The poem is about kisses from his love, and his dismay that each one is gone as soon as its tasted. However, there is no need to dispair because, as near as I recall:

But, wherefore should I sigh
For on sweet Delia's (or was it Anthea?) lips I spy
A thousand more..........

Can anyone help?

Re: A poem on kisses
Posted by: ilza (200.162.247.---)
Date: May 29, 2003 09:17PM

not quite as you quoted, but maybe this one ?

by Robert Herrick

AH, my Anthea ! Must my heart still break ?
(Love makes me write, what shame forbids to speak)
Give me a kiss, and to that kiss a score ;
Then to that twenty add a hundred more :
A thousand to that hundred : so kiss on,
To make that thousand up a million.
Treble that million, and when that is done
Let's kiss afresh, as when we first begun.
But yet, though love likes well such scenes as these,
There is an act that will more fully please :
Kissing and glancing, soothing, all make way
But to the acting of this private play :
Name it I would ; but, being blushing red,
The rest I'll speak when we meet both in bed.

still looking
Posted by: ilza (200.162.247.---)
Date: May 29, 2003 09:28PM

I am going to answer myself - that's not the one.

Re: still looking
Posted by: Hugh Clary (
Date: May 30, 2003 01:33PM

Frustrating! I know I have read it, but an hour spent searching was in vain.

Re: still looking
Posted by: Sohail (
Date: May 30, 2003 04:26PM

Thank you Ilza and Hugh. Yes, I too spent a loooong time trying to find it. And I shall, but it seems only the real world of books will have the poem. After all, strange to say, not everything is on-line. :-)

Re: A poem on kisses
Posted by: ph (
Date: May 30, 2003 08:45PM

Herrick, fickle guy, wrote love poems for so many women! There was Julia, Sappho, Anthea, Electra, Corinna, Dianeme, Silvia, Biancha, Lucia, Perenna, Perilla, Oenone, Myrrha, Phillis...

This is probably not the one you are looking for, but it has the same general idea. (It's right here in the archives.)

by Robert Herrick

As Julia once a-slumb'ring lay,
It chanced a bee did fly that way,
After a dew, or dew-like shower,
To tipple freely in a flower;
For some rich flower, he took the lip
Of Julia, and began to sip;
But when he felt he suck'd from thence
Honey, and in the quintessence,
He drank so much he scarce could stir;
So Julia took the pilferer.
And thus surprised, as filchers use,
He thus began himself t'excuse:
'Sweet lady-flower, I never brought
Hither the least one thieving thought;
But taking those rare lips of yours
For some fresh, fragrant, luscious flowers,
I thought I might there take a taste,
Where so much sirup ran at waste.
Besides, know this, I never sting
The flower that gives me nourishing;
But with a kiss, or thanks, do pay
For honey that I bear away.'
--This said, he laid his little scrip
Of honey 'fore her ladyship,
And told her, as some tears did fall,
That, that he took, and that was all.
At which she smiled, and bade him go
And take his bag; but thus much know,
When next he came a-pilfering so,
He should from her full lips derive
Honey enough to fill his hive.

Re: A poem on kisses
Posted by: rikki (
Date: May 30, 2003 09:30PM

Fickle for sure. And not always so charming!

Kisses Loathsome

I abhor the slimy kiss,
Which to me most loathsome is.
Those lips please me which are placed
Close, but not too strictly laced.
Yielding I would have them, yet
Not a wimbling tongue admit.
What should poking-sticks make there,
When the ruff is set elsewhere?

Robert Herrick

Re: A poem on kisses
Posted by: Hugh Clary (
Date: May 31, 2003 12:45PM

Wimbling meant boring, like with an auger, it appears. A poking-stick seems to have been an instrument for adjusting the plaits on a (ruffled) collar, but the image is still obscure, at least to me. And Herrick had a LOT to learn about kissing!

Re: A poem on kisses
Posted by: Sohail (
Date: May 31, 2003 07:24PM

Found it! It wasn't Herrick.

Thanks everyone for trying to help and introducing me to poems I would never have otherwise read.

Soft child of love,thou balmy bliss,
Inform me, O delicious kiss,
Why thou suddenly art gone,
Lost in the moment thou art won?

Yet go! For wherefore should I sigh?
On Delia's lips, with raptured eye,
On Delia's blushing lips I see
A thousand full as sweet as thee.

J. Walcot

Re: A poem on kisses
Posted by: Hugh Clary (
Date: June 01, 2003 08:20PM

Bingo, thanks!

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