Each time that I read Herrick, I come away with a refreshing and invigorating sense of having encountered the world and its denizens in all of their variety. Here is but a tiny instance.
To safe-guard Man from wrongs, there nothing must
Be truer to him, than a wise Distrust.
And to thy self be best this sentence known,
Hear all men speak; but credit few or none.
Robert Herrick, Hesperides (1648).
"Sentence" (line 3) is used in an older sense: "A quoted saying of some eminent person, an apophthegm. Also, a pithy or pointed saying, an aphorism, maxim." Tom Cain and Ruth Connolly (editors), The Complete Poetry of Robert Herrick, Volume II (Oxford University Press 2013), pages 541 and 563, citing OED.
Gilbert Spencer, "Air Raid Warning" (1940)
Herrick's poem brings to mind this:
Throughout the world if it were sought,
Fair words enough a man shall find;
They be good cheap, they cost right nought,
Their substance is but only wind.
But well to say and so to mean,
That sweet accord is seldom seen.
Thomas Wyatt, in E. M. W. Tillyard (editor), The Poetry of Sir Thomas Wyatt: A Selection and a Study (Chatto & Windus 1949).
This has long been one of my favorite poems, no doubt for its music. It is one of those poems that you inadvertently have in your memory after having read it a few times. As an example of pure poetry, it falls into the same class (for me at least) as Wordsworth's "A slumber did my spirit seal," upon which I have apostrophized on a previous occasion.
Gilbert Spencer, "Summer Evening, Hook End Farm" (1957)
In offering these poems, I do not have in mind the private sphere. I am merely in one of my periodic grouches about the disingenuous dissembling that goes on in the public sphere. I turn to the following poem whenever I fall into this mood.
Leave Them Alone
There's nothing happening that you hate
That's really worthwhile slamming;
Be patient. If you only wait
You'll see time gently damning
Newspaper bedlamites who raised
Each day the devil's howl,
Versifiers who had seized
The poet's begging bowl.
The whole hysterical passing show
The hour apotheosized
Into a cul-de-sac will go
And be not even despised.
Patrick Kavanagh, Poems (1955).
"The School on Peggy Hill, Ambleside" (1952)