The Dark Water
Thames, the River
His Teares to Thermoses
Robert Herrick (1591–1674)
I SEND, I send here my supremest kiss
To thee, my silver-footed Thamasis.
No more shall I reiterate thy strand,
Whereon so many stately structures stand:
Nor in the summer’s sweeter evenings go,
To bath in thee, as thousand others doe:
No more shall I a long thy christall glide,
In barge with boughes and rushes beautifi’d,
With soft-smooth virgins for our chast disport,
To Richmond, Kingstone, and to Hampton-Court:
Never againe shall I with finnie ore
Put from or draw unto the faithfull shore,
And landing here, or safely landing there,
Make way to my beloved Westminster,
Or to the golden Cheap-side, where the earth
Of Julia Herrick gave to me my birth.
May all clean nimphs and curious water dames
With swan-like state flote up and down thy streams:
No drought upon thy wanton waters fall
To make them leane, and languishing at all:
No ruffling winds come hither to discease
Thy pure and silver-wristed Naides.
Keep up your state, ye streams; and as ye spring,
Never make sick your banks by surfeiting.
Grow young with tydes, and though I see ye never,
Receive this vow, so fare ye well for ever.