Herrick's Julia

Original Text: 
Bevington, Helen. "Herrick's Julia". Studies in Poetry. Edited by Neal Frank Doubleday. New York: Kingman Press, 2007: 325-326.
1Whenas in perfume Julia went,
2Then, then, how sweet was the intent
3Of that inexorable scent.
4Her very shadow walked in myrrh
5And smelled (itself) of pomander
6And Herrick could but covet her.
7The sight of Julia's dainty limb
8Recalled a smooth white egg to him.
9And when he saw a smooth white egg,
10I guess he thought of Julia's leg.
11All that was fair, all that was neat
12Did Herrick love: her silvery feet,
13Her golden head, her double chin.
14(Conceive the dither he was in.)
15There were the riband on her throat,
16Her silken air, her petticoat,
17The soft pretension of her dress
18To kindle in him lovingness.
19They took his homage and his heart.
20So, too, did every other part:
21Her breasts, her eager lips, her hair.
22I think she pleased him everywhere.
23Then for his subjugation, ah,
24There was the total Julia.
Publication Start Year: 
1946
Publication Notes: 
The New Yorker; and Nineteen Million Elephants, and Other Poems (Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 1950).
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire, assisted by Ana Berdinskikh
RPO Edition: 
2009
Special Copyright: 

Permission granted by the estate of Helen Bevington. Further reproduction of "Herrick's Julia" requires explicit written permission by the poet's estate.