Sunday Poetry – James Drake

I’m enjoying my serendipitous selection of poems from my Everyman’s Book of English Love Poems. It often throws up unknown poems & completely obscure poets. I can’t find any information about today’s poet, James Drake. The poem comes from a collection called The Humours of New Tunbridge Wells at Islington, published in 1742. The picture is Mr & Mrs Andrews by Gainsborough (from here) & I wonder if their courtship was anything like this?

Can any transports equal those
Which two fond lovers feel,
Who meet, that thought to meet no more,
And their past woes reveal?


Their joys, too great to be expressed,
So crowd the faltering tongue,
Fain would they breathe their soul in words,
But passion strikes them dumb.


Yet do their eyes at the blest sight
Enraptured glances dart;
By these and sighs their wishes paint,
Which flutter round the heart.


Like statues fixed, amazed they stand,
Survey their mutual charms;
Then, when the ecstasy gives leave,
Fly to each other’s arms.

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