Herbert of Cherbury

Edward Herbert, 1st Baron Herbert of Cherbury (or Chirbury) KB (March 3, 1583 – August 20, 1648) was an Anglo-Welsh soldier, diplomat, historian, poet and religious philosopher of the Kingdom of England.

 


UPON COMBING HER HAIR
Herbert of Cherbury

Breaking from under that thy cloudy veil,
Open and shine yet more, shine out more clear,
Thou glorious golden-beam-darting hair,
Even till my wonder-stricken senses fail.

Shoot out in light and shine those rays on far,
Thou much more fair than is the Queen of Love,
When she doth comb her in her sphere above,
And from a planet turns a blazing-star.

Nay, thou art greater too, more destiny
Depends on thee than on her influence;
No hair thy fatal hand doth now dispense
But to some one a thread of life must be.

While gracious unto me, though both dost sunder
Those glories which, if they united were,
Might have amazed sense, and shewest each hair,
Which if alone had been too great a wonder.

And now spread in their goodly length, she appears
No creature which the earth might call her own,
But rather one that in her gliding down
Heaven’s beams did crown to shew us she was theirs.

And come from thence, how can they fear time’s rage
Which in his power else on earth most strange
Such golden treasure doth to silver change
By that improper alchemy of age?

But stay, methinks new beauties do arise,
While she withdraws these glories which were spread.
Wonder of beauties, set thy radiant head
And strike out day from thy yet fairer eyes.