A Maypole

Deprived of root, and branch, and rind,
Yet flowers I bear of every kind:
And such is my prolific power,
They bloom in less than half an hour;
Yet standers-by may plainly see
They get no nourishment from me.
My head with giddiness goes round,
And yet I firmly stand my ground;
All over naked I am seen,
And painted like an Indian queen.
No couple-beggar in the land
E'er join'd such numbers hand in hand.
I join'd them fairly with a ring;
Nor can our parson blame the thing.
And though no marriage words are spoke,
They part not till the ring is broke:
Yet hypocrite fanatics cry,
I'm but an idol raised on high;
And once a weaver in our town,
A damn'd Cromwellian, knock'd me down.
I lay a prisoner twenty years,
And then the jovial cavaliers
To their old post restored all three
I mean the church, the king, and me.

Jonathan Swift