To Mr. H. Lawes on his Airs
By John Milton, his 13th sonnet.
, whose tuneful and well-measured song
First taught our English music
how to span
Words with just note and accent, not to scan
' ears, committing short and long:
Thy worth and skill exempts thee from the throng,
With praise enough for Envy
to look wan
To after age thou shalt be writ the man
That with smooth air couldst humour best our tongue.
Thou honour'st Verse
, and Verse must lend her wing
To honour thee, the priest of Phoebus
That tun'st their happiest lines in hymn or story.
shall give Fame leave to set thee higher
Than his Casella
, whom he wooed to sing,
Met in the milder shades of Purgatory