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C.D. Warner, et al., comp. The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

To My Ring

By Paul Fleming (1609–1640)

Translation of Charles Harvey Genung

SO go, fair emerald; my loving message take

To her who has my heart, and rest thou well content

That henceforth thou art hers to whom I have thee sent;

Thy purity her hand will only purer make.

Be with her if she sleep; be with her if she wake;

She’ll ask thee oft of me and what thy message meant.

Be thou like other gems: within thy brightness pent,

Keep what thou seest hid, for her and my sweet sake.

And if it come to pass that she, in thoughts half lost,

Should press her lips to thee, then save the kiss for me

Until the evening come. Unless the zephyrs see

The imprint of her kiss, and, enviously crossed,

Demand to bring it me, ere I to claim it go,

Then send it me by them, and let no mortal know.