So wrote John Fletcher (1579-1625). But if, like me, you suffer from regular bouts of insomnia you'll know that - far from being 'sweet' or even delightful, sleep (or the lack of it) can be a real pain.
Well, help is at hand. I have found a solution. It does not involve drugs. Nor does it involve imaginary sheep. No. It involves trains.
Allow me to explain. My bouts of nocturnal wakefulness usually occur between one or two a.m. and about four or five in the morning. It can be a sizeable time to lie in the darkness trying to get back to sleep. Of course, therein (as the Bard says) lies the rub. Because whatever you do, you should NOT try to go back to sleep. Absolutely not.
Get up, make a drink, read a book. Do anything except lie there trying to get back to sleep. But sometimes getting up can make matters worse. I invariably find something fascinating to do and forget it's actually the middle of the night and I should be doing something else. (Namely, sleeping.)
So I've taken to lying in bed and reading. Not a book, because that involves the turning of pages to say nothing of the turning of a light which might disturb whoever's sleeping next to you. But a smartphone or a tablet? Made for such a situation, surely!
Well, maybe. Although the Kindle app on my phone is a godsend (as are Twitter, Facebook and Instagram in the wee small hours of the morning) the light from that small screen can actually trigger sleeplessness, resulting as it does in a reduction in melatonin.
So what to do? A milky drink is good (containing, as it does, a sleep-inducing chemical called triptofan) but you have to get up to make that (see above). And the 'phone or tablet screen is bad, but only if you look at it for too long. And that's the problem. Reading an interesting book (or some gripping blog posts) keeps me glued to the little rectangle for longer than is good for me. I need something silent on the phone or iPad that lulls me gently back to the land of nod.
And, last night, I found it. It's this. I couldn't not share it. It's wonderful. Don't ask me how I found it as I'm not sure I know myself. But it's one of a whole series of railway journeys from the driver's perspective (Führerstandmitfahrt, if you please!) on various European railways.
The scenery alone make the films worth watching. But there's also something hypnotic about the regularly passing sleepers(!) as well as the intermittent stops at various stations that makes this film and the others like it so eyelid-droopingly wonderful that I couldn't not share it with you today.
And if, like me, you'd like to join the aforementioned Mr Fletcher and,
Let some pleasing dreams beguile
All my fancies; that from thence
I may feel an influence
All my powers of care bereaving!
Then, give this a go. I've yet to see the entire journey. Because I reach my desired destination about about five minutes travelling.