Reads a bit oddly, doesn’t it? Yet Donno insists on this reading in her Penguin edition of the Marvell poems, instead of the more obvious “Now therefore, while the youthful hue / Sits on thy skin like morning dew”. Certainly to the modern ear the idea of morning glue conjures up no very pleasant image. I think its just an editor being perverse (the support cited is the very thin “life is nothing else but as it were a glue, which in man fasteneth the soul and body together”, apparently by William Baldwin in 1547 and cited in the OED, but I haven’t checked). She also prefers “iron grates” to “iron gates”, to which ditto.

As to why stoat has become poetry not climate, well, theres not a lot of climate around at the moment. And I just discovered that my old blog is the top google hit for the iron gates of life, which is curious.

Here’s the same extract as before. Its the best bit, though it omits the vast vegetable love. You’ll immeadiately recognise it as a plea for a high discount rate :-).

…Now therefore, while the youthful hue
Sits on thy skin like morning dew,
And while thy willing soul transpires
At every pore with instant fires,
Now let us sport us while we may;
And now, like am’rous birds of prey,
Rather at once our time devour,
Than languish in his slow-chapp’d power.
Let us roll all our strength, and all
Our sweetness, up into one ball;
And tear our pleasures with rough strife
Thorough the iron gates of life
Thus, though we cannot make our sun
Stand still, yet we will make him run.


  1. #1 JesusChristHimself

    Hide glue?

  2. #2 Gareth

    I’ll see your iron gates, and raise you “ontological transformation”. Google gives my farm blog as the top hit. And that’s the top hit for the post about being the top hit. If you see what I mean. Recursiveness is a marvell…

    Blwyddyn newydd dda.

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