Bookshelf: “Lovers,” by Hanns Reich (1968)

To Celia

Kiss me, sweet: the weary lover

Can your favors keep, and cover,

When the common courting jay

All your bounties will betray.

Kiss again! no creature comes

Kiss, and score up wealthy sums

On my lips, thus hardly sundered,

While you breathe. First give a hundred,

Then a thousand, then another

Hundred, then unto the other

Add a thousand, and so more

Till you equal with the store

All the grass that Romney yields,

Or the sands in Chelsea fields,

Or the drops in silver Thames,

In the silent summer-nights,

When youths ply their stolen delights

That the curious may not know

How to tell ’em as they flow,

And the envious when they find

What their number is, be pined.

Gaius Valerius Catullus (84?–54 B.C.)