This sonnet, by John Milton, was written in 1655. It is addressed to Edward Lawrence, the son of Henry Lawrence, who was the president of Oliver Cromwell's Council of State. Milton also worked in Cromwell's government, of which he was at times critical.


  • Line 8 refers to Matthew 6:28; I got as close as I could.
  • Line 6, Favonius is another word for Zephyrus, which is the Latin word for the west wind. It's not just a random pipelink.

A . Lawrence, of virtuous father virtuous son,
B . Now that the fields are dank, and ways are mire,
B . Where shall we sometimes meet, and by the fire
A . Help waste a sullen day; what may be won
A . From the hard season gaining? Time will run
B . On smoother, till Favonius re-inspire
B . The frozen earth, and clothe in fresh attire
A . The lily and rose, that neither sow'd nor spun.
C . What neat repast shall feast us, light and choice,
D . Of Attic taste, with wine, whence we may rise
C . To hear the lute well touch'd, or artful voice
E . Warble immortal notes and Tuscan air?
E . He who of those delights can judge, and spare
D . To interpose them oft, is not unwise.


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