Sunday, February 14, 2016

Valentine's Day - A Love Poem from England's King Charles II

Sir Peter Lely (1618–1680) Frances Teresa Stuart 1662-65

Frances Teresa Stewart, Duchess of Richmond & Lennox (1647-1702) was a prominent member of England's Court of the Restoration and was famous for refusing to become a mistress of King Charles II.

Charles Stuart II in 1680 Attributed to English Court painter Thomas Hawker Charles II (1630–1685) was monarch of the 3 kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland.

Charles II poem to Frances Stewart:

I pass all my hours in a shady old grove,
But I love not the day when I see not my love:
I survey ev'ry walk now my Phyllis is gone,
And sigh when I think we were there all alone;
O then 'tis, O then that I think there's no Hell
Like loving too well.

But each shade and each conscious bo'wr when I find,

Where I once had been happy and she had been kind,
When I see the print left of her foot in the green,
And imagine the pleasures may yet come again;
O then 'tis, O then that no joy's above
The pleasures of love.

Whilst alone to myself I repeat all her charms,

She I love may be lock'd in another man's arms;
She may laugh at my cares and so fla se she may be,
To say the kind things she before said to me,
O then 'tis, O then that I think here's no Hell
Like loving too well.

But when I consider the truth of her heart

Such an innocent passion, so kind without art,
I do fear I have wrong'd her and so she may be
So full of true love to be jealous of me.
O then 'tis, O then I think no joy's above
The pleasure of love.

See more on Charles II & Frances at Tom Sykes' excellent blog on the English Early Modern era In Pursuit of History.