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Poem by Thomas Parnell


A Riddle


Upon a Bed of humble clay
In all her Garments loose
A Prostitute my Mother lay
To ev'ry Comer's use.
'Till one Gallant in heat of love
His Own Peculiar made her
And to a Region far above
And softer Beds convey'd her.
But in his Absence, to his Place
His rougher Rival came
And with a cold constrain'd Embrace
Begat me on the Dame.
I then appear'd to Publick View
A Creature wondrous bright
But shortly perishable too
Inconstant, nice and light.
On Feathers not together fast
I wildly flew about
And from my Father's country past
To find my Mother out.
Where her Gallant of her beguil'd
With me enamour'd grew
And I that was my Mother's Child
Brought forth my Mother too. 



Thomas Parnell


Thomas Parnell's other poems:
  1. Since Bearing of a Gentle Mind
  2. On A Lady With A Foul Breath
  3. The Judgment of Paris
  4. Chloris Appearing In A Looking Glass
  5. The Convert's Love


Poems of the other poets with the same name:

  • William Cowper A Riddle ("I am just two and two, I am warm, I am cold")
  • Jonathan Swift A Riddle ("I'm wealthy and poor")

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