Darling shell, where hast thou been,
What far regions hast thou seen;
From what pastimes art thou come:
Can we make amends at home?
Whether thou hast turned the dance
To the maids of ocean,
Know I not- but Ignorance
Never hurts Devotion-
This I know, my darling Shell,
I shall ever love thee well,
Though too little to resound
While the Nereids dance around;
For, of all the shells that are,
Thou art sure the brightest:
Thou, Ianthe's infant care,
Most these eyes delightest-
Earlier to whose aid she owes
Teeth like budding snowdrop rows;
Teeth, whose love-incited pow'rs,
I have felt in happier hours.
On my shoulder, on my neck,
Still the cherisht mark remains,
Well portray'd in many a speck
Round thy smooth and quiet veins.
Who can wonder then, if thou
Hearest breathe my tender vow;
If thy lips, so pure, so bright,
Are dim with kisses, day and night?