41.—NEAR LONDON TOWN.
1 Near London town there grows a flower, The fairest to be seen ; It groweth by a pleasant bower, Near by a pleasant green.
2 This lovely flower, this lovely flower,
It smells so sweet and rare, The fragrance of it is perfect, To drive away dull care.
3 Now oftentimes have 1 desired
That flower for my parterre, But round it groweth many a thorn, Who draweth near beware !
4 But if I could, O then I would
Tear all those briars away; I'd keep it from the nipping frost, From scorching sun by day.
5 Did e'er you see the lily white ?
Did e'er you see the rose? The violet or the pansy bright? Sure she is none of those.
6 The auricula and tulip too,
So glorious to behold, The cowslip and the bell of blue, And eke the marigold.
7 Alas for every flower fair!
The wintry winds will blow; The biting frost will chill the air, And bury all in snow.
8 And my fair flower will fade away,
Her bed a grave will prove, For all things have but little stay, Those least that most we love.