William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

Bridal Song


ROSES, their sharp spines being gone,
Not royal in their smells alone,
   But in their hue;
Maiden pinks, of odour faint,
Daisies smell-less, yet most quaint,
   And sweet thyme true;

Primrose, firstborn child of Ver;
Merry springtime's harbinger,
   With her bells dim;
Oxlips in their cradles growing,
Marigolds on death-beds blowing,
   Larks'-heels trim;

All dear Nature's children sweet
Lie 'fore bride and bridegroom's feet,
   Blessing their sense!
Not an angel of the air,
Bird melodious or bird fair,
   Be absent hence!

The crow, the slanderous cuckoo, nor
The boding raven, nor chough hoar,
   Nor chattering pye,
May on our bride-house perch or sing,
Or with them any discord bring,
   But from it fly!

Submitted: Saturday, January 04, 2003

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  • Fuzzy James (4/1/2013 1:49:00 PM)

    So true of any wedding...........we pray the discourteous types do not arrive :) (Report) Reply

  • Stevie Taite (12/11/2012 11:34:00 AM)

    Why should the birds not be there? Or am I getting it all wrong? Some one please explain? (Report) Reply

  • Albert Wong (7/10/2009 7:00:00 PM)

    I have post a Chinese translation about this poem, but there ia a guy named: justjust gives information like this as follow:

    'this was the first time i saw this poem. i have a feeling that it was not written by shakespeare. why so? meter is one thing of consideration. shakespeare did not seem to use this kind of meter (often) . secondly, some words may not be so shakespearean. for instance, the word 'Ver'. apparently this is not an english word. it is latin, meaning spring. i don't recall seeing this word in his sonnets. also the rhyme. i would think that normally shakespeare would choose a different type of rhyme. ' (Report) Reply

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