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Ály thoughts awhile, like you, imprison'd lay;
We'll write whate'er from you we hear; Great joys, as well as sorrows, make a stay ;
For that's the posy of the year. They binder one another in the crowd,
This difference only will remainAnd none are heard, whilst all would speak aloud.
That Time his former face does shew, Should every man's officious gladness haste,
Winding into himself again ; And be afraid to show itself the last,
But your unweary'd wit is always new. The throng of gratulations now would be
"Tis said, that conjurers have an art found out Another loss to you of liberty.
To carry spirits confin'd in rings about : When of your freedom men the news did hear,
The wonder now will less appear, Where it was wish'd-for, that is every where,
When we behold your magic here. 'Twas like the speech which from your lips does
You, by your rings, do prisoners take, fall;
And chain them with your mystic spells, As soon as it was heard, it ravish'd al).
And, the strong witchcraft full to make, So eloquent Tully did from exile come;
Love, the great Devil, charm’d to those circle, 'Thus long'd for he return'd, and cherish'd Rome;
dwells. Which could no more his tongue and counsels miss; Rome, the world's head, was nothing without his.
They, who above do various circles find, Wrong to those sacred ashes, I should do,
Say, like a ring, th' equator Heaven does bind. Should I compare any to him but you ;
When Heaven shall be adorn'd by thee You, to whom Art and Nature did dispense
(Which then more Heaven than 'tis will be) The consulship of wit and eloquence.
"Tis thou must write the posy there, Nor did your fate differ from his at all,
For it wanteth one as yet, Because the doom of exile was his fall;
Though the Sun pass through’t twice a year For the whole world, without a native home,
The Sun, who is esteem'd the god of wit. Is nothing but a prison of larger room.
Happy the hands which wear thy sacred rings, But like a melting woman suffer'd he,
They'll teach those hands to write mysterious He who before out-did humanity;
things. Nor could his spirit constant and stedfast prove.
Let other rings, with jewels bright, Whose art 't had been, and greatest end, to move.
Cast around their costly light; You put ill-fortune in so good a dress,
Let them want no noble stone, That it out-shone other men's happiness :
By nature rich and art refin'd; Had your prosperity always clearly gone,
Yet shall thy rings give place to none, As your high merits would have laid it on,
But only that which must thy marriage bind.
PROLOGUE TO THE GUARDIAN:
ho says the times do learning disallow? The faithful diamond keeps his native light,
When you appear, great prince ! our night is done ; And is oblig'd to darkness for a ray,
You are our morning-star, and shall be our sun. That would be more oppress'd than help'd by day. But our scene's London now ; and by the rout Your soul then most show'd her unconquer'd pow
We perish, if the Round-heads be about: er,
For now no ornament the head must wear, Was stronger and more armed than the Tower.
No bays, no mitre, not so much as hair.
How can a play pass safely, when we know
Our only hope is this, that it may be Were now to be your rebel, not your foe;
A play may pass too, made extempore.
Though other arts poor and neglected grow, Fortune henceforth will more of providence have,
They'll admit poesy, which was always so.
But we contemn the fury of these days,
Our Muse, blest prince ! does only on you rely ;
Would gladly live, but not refuse to die.
Our ignorance, but our duty too, we show; 1 LITTLE thought the time would ever be,
I would all ignorant people would do so!
At other times expect our wit or art;
This comedy is acted by the heart,
The play, great sir ! is done ; yet needs must fear, To womankind, epitomiz'd in you.
Though you brought all your father's mercies here, If, as the ancients did not doubt to sing,
It may offend your highness; and we ’ave now The turning years be well compar'd ta ring, Three bours done treason here, for aught we know,
BEFORE THE PRINCE.
WHO MADE POSIES FOR RINGS.
ON THE DEATH OP
No tuneful birds play with their wonted cheer, But power your grace can above Nature give, It can give power to make abortives live;
And call the learned youths to hear; In which, if our bold wishes should be crost, No whistling winds through the glad branches fly: 'Tis but the life of one poor week 't has lost :
But all, with sad solemnity, Though it should fall beneath your mortal scorn,
Mute and unmoved be,
To him iny Muse made haste with every strain,
He lor'd my worthless rhymes, and, like a friend,
Would find out something to commend.
Hence now, iny Muse! thou canst not me delight: IMMODICIS BREVIS EST ETAS, & RARA SENECTUS.
Be this my latest verse,
With which I now adorn his hearse ; It was a dismal and a fearful night,
And this my grief, without thy help, shall write. Scarce could the Morn drive on th' unwilling Had I a wreath of bays about my brow, Light,
I should contemn that flourishing honour pow; When Sleep, Death's imagc, left my troubled Condemn it to the fire, and joy to hear breast,
It rage and crackle there. By something liker death possest.
Instead of bays, crown with sad cypress me ; My eyes with tears did uncommanded fow,
Cypress, which tombs does beautify: And on my soul hung the dull wciglit
Not Phæbus griev'd, so much as I, Of some intolerable fate.
For him who first was made that mournful tree. What bell was that? ah me! too much I know.
Large was his soul; as large a soul as e'er My sweet companion, and my gentle peer, Submitted to inforin a body here; Why hast thou left me thus unkindly here, High as the place 'twas shortly in Heaven to Thy end for ever, and my life, to moan?
have, 0, thou hast left me all alone!
But low and humble as his grave: Thy soul and body, when death's agony
So high, that all the Virtues there did come. Besieg'd around thy noble heart,
As to their chiefest seat
Conspicuous and great;
Was fill'd with innocent gallantry and truth, If once my griefs prove tedious too.
Triumphant o'er the sins of youth. Silent and sad I walk about all day,
He, like the stars, to which he now is gone, As sullen ghosts stalk speechless by
That shine with beains like flame, Where their hid treasures lie;
Yet burn not with the same,
Nor did more learning crer crowded lie
In such a short mortality.
Whene'er the skilful youth discours'd or writo
Still did the notions throng
About his cloqnent tongue,
Nor could his ink flow faster than his wit, Say, for you saw us, ye immortal lights,
So strong a wit did Nature to him frame, How oft unweary'd have we spent the nights, As all things but his judgment overcame; Till thé Ledæan stars, so fam'd for love,
His judgment like the heavenly moon did show, Wonder'd at us from above!
Tempering tha: inighty sea below.
Would have been able to control
His over-powering soul; Arts which I lov'd, for they, my friend, were We ’ave lost in him arts that not yet are found. thine.
His mirth was the pure spirits of various wit, Ye fields of Cambridge, our dear Cambridge, say Yct never did his God or friends forget; Have ye not seen us walking every day?
And, when deep talk and wisdom came in view, Was there a tree about which did not know
Retir'd, and gave to them their due:
For the rich help of books he always took,
Though his own searching mind before
Was so with notions written o'er
As if wise Nature had made that her book.
So many virtues join'd in him, as we Henceforth, no learned youths beneath you sing, Can scarce pick here and there in history; Till all the tuneful birds t your boughs they More than old writers' practice e'er could reach; bring i
As much as they could ever teach.
IN IMITATION OF
These did Religion, queen of Mrtues ! sway;
He sees thee gentle, fair, and gay,
And trusts the faithless April of thy May.
T whom thou untry'd dost shine!
But there's no danger now for me, He always livd, as other saints do die.
Since o'er Loretto's shrine,
In witness of the shipwreck past,
My consecrated vessel hangs at lasts
Like the Sun's laborious light,
Which still in water sets at night,
Si tecum mihi, chare Martialis, &c.
L. v. Ep. xx.
IF, dearest friend, it my good fate might be
If we for happiness could leisure find,
And wandering Time into a method bird; Where life, spirit, pleasure, always us'd to dwell. We should not sure the great-men's favour need, But happy thou, ta'en from this frantic age,
Nor on long hopes, the court's thin diet, feed; Where ignorance and hypocrisy does rage!
We should not patience find daily to hear · A fitter time for Heaven no soul ere chose,
The calumnies and flatteries spoken there ;
We sbould not the lords' tables humbly use,
Or talk in ladies' charnbers love and news;
But books, and wise discourse, gardens and fields, Upon that white and radiant crew,
And all the joys that unmixt Nature yields; See'st not a soul cloth'd with more light than thine. Thick summer shades, where winter still does lie,
Bright winter fires, that summer's part supply: And, if the glorious saints cease not to know Sleep, not control'd by cares, confin'd to night, Their wretched friends who fight with life below, Or bound in any rule but appetite : Thy fame to me does still the same abide, Free, but not savage or ungracious mirth, Only more pure and rarefy'd.
Rich wines, to give it quick and easy birth; There, whilst immortal hymns thou dost rehearse, A few companions, which ourselves should uhuse, Thou dost with holy pity see
A gentle mistress, and a gentler Muse. Our dull and earthy poesy,
Such dearest friend ! such, without doubt, should Where grief and misery can be join'd with verse. be
Our place, our business, and our company.
But sees good suns, of which we are to give
A strict account, set and march thick away:
Knows a man how to live, and does he stay?
Lib. I. Od. v.
MARGARITA first possest,
If I remember well, my breast,
Margarita first of all;
But when awhile the tanton maid
With my restless heart had play'd,
Martha took the flying ball.
Martha soon did it resign
To the beauteous Catharine.
Beauteous Catharine gave place
With the possession of my heart)
To Eliza's conquering face.
Eliza till this hour might reign,
Had she not evil counsels ta'en.
Fundamental laws she broke,
And still new favourites she chose,
Till up in arms my passions rose,
And cast away her yoke.
Mary then, and gentle Anné,
Both to reign at once began;
TO SIR WILLIAM DAVENANT;
UPON HIS TWO FIRST BOOKS OF GONDIBERT, FINISHED BEFORE HIS VOYAGE TO AMERICA.
Alternately they sway'd,
And sometimes both I obey'd.
And did rigorous laws impose ;
A mighty tyrant she ! Long, alas ! should I have been Under that iron-scepter'd queen,
Had not Rebecca set me free. When fair Rebecca set me free,
'Twas then a golden time with me:
But soon those pleasures fled;
And Judith reigned in her stead.
Judith held the sovereign power:
Wondrous beautiful her face!
And so Susanna took her place.
Arm'd with a resistless flame,
And th' artillery of her eye; Whilst she proudly march'd about, Greater conquests to find out,
She beat out Susan by the by. But in her place I then obey'd
Black-ey'd Bess, her viceroy-maid;
To whom ensued a vacancy: Thousand worse passions then possest The interregnum of my breast;
Bless me from such an anarchy! Gentle Henrietta then,
And a third Mary, next began;
Then Joan, and Jane, and Audria ;
And then a long et cætera.
The strength and riches of their state,
The powder, patches, and the pins,
That make up all their magazines ;
To take and keep men's hearts;
The letters, embassies, and spies, The frowns, and smiles, and flatteries, The quarrels, tears, and perjuries,
(Numberless, nameless, mysteries !) And all the little lime-twigs laid,
By Machiavel the waiting maid ;
I more voluminous should grow (Chiefly if I like them should tell All change of weathers that befell)
Than Holinshed or Stow. But I will briefer with them be,
Since few of them were long with me.
An higher and a nobler strain My present emperess does claim, Heleonora, first oth' name;
Whom God grant long to reign !
METHINKS heroic poesy till now,
By fatal bands whilst present empires fall,
merit The poet's fury than the zealot's spirit: And from the grave thou mak’st this empire rise, Not like some dreadful ghost, t'affright our eyes, But with more lustre and triumphant state, Than when it crown'd at proud Verona sate. So will our God rebuild man's perish'd frame, And raise him up much better, yet the same: So god-like poets do past things rehearse, Not change, but heighten, Nature by their verse.
With shame, methinks, great Italy must see Her conquerors rais'd to life again by thee: Rais'd by such powerful verse, that ancient Rome May blush no less to see her wit o'ercome. Some men their fancies, like their faith, derive, And think all ill but that which Rome does give; The marks of old and Catholic would find; To the same chair would truth and fietion bind. Thou in those beaten paths disdain'st to tread, And scorn'st to live by robbing of the dead. Since Time does all things change, thou think'st
not fit This latter age should see all new but wit; Thy fancy, like a flame, its way does make, And leave bright tracts for following pens to take. Sure 'twas this noble boldness of the Muse Did thy desire to seek new worlds infuse; And ne'er did Heaven so much a voyage bless, If thou canst plant but there with like success.
THE USE OF IT IN DIVINE MATTERS.
Brave Jersey Muse! and he's for this high style And seeks by useless pride,
With slight and withering leaves that nakedness to Alas! to men here no words less hard be
hide. To rhyme with, than + Mount Orgueil is to me;
“ Henceforth,” said God, “ the wretched sons of Mount Orgueil ! which, in scorn o'th' Muses law,
Earth With no yoke-fellow word will deign to draw.
Shall sweat for food in vain, Stubborn Mount Orgueil ! 'tis a work to make it
That will not long sustain; Come into rhyme, more hard than 'twere to take it. And bring with labour forth each fond abortive birth. Alas! to bring your tropes and figures here,
That serpent too, their pride, Strange as to bring camels and elephants were ;
Which aims at things deny'd; And metaphor is so unknown a thing,
That learn'd and eloquent lust; 'Twould need the preface of God save the king.
Instead of mounting high, shall creep upon the Yet this I'll say, for th' honour of the place,
Some blind themselves, 'cause possibly they may From th' actual sin of bombast too they are,
Be led by others a right way; (That other crying sin oth’ English Muse) That even Satan himself can accuse
They build on sands, which if uninov'd they find,
"Tis but because there was no wind. None here (no not so much as the divines)
Less hard 'tis, not to err ourselves, than know For th' motus primò primi to strong lines.
If our forefathers err'd or no. Well, since the soil then does not naturally bear
When we trust men concerning God, we then Verse, who (a devil) should import it here? For that to me would seem as strange a thing
Trust not God concerning men. As who did first wild beasts int' islands bring; Visions and inspirations some expect Unless you think that it might taken be,
Their course here to direct; As Green did Gondibert, in a prize at sea :
Like senseless chymists their own wealth destroy, But that's a fortune falls not every day ;
Imaginary gold t enjoy: 'Tis true Green was made by it ; for they say So stars appear to drop to us from sky, The parl’ament did a noble bounty do,
And gild the passage as they fly; And gave him the whole prize, their tenths and But when they fall, and meet th’ opposing ground, fifteenths too.
What but a sordid slime is found ? Sometimes their fancies they 'bove reason set,
And fast, that they may dream of meat ; THE TREE OF KNOWLEDGE.
Sometimes ill spirits their sickly souls delude,
And bastard forms obtrude;
So Endor's wretched sorceress, although
She Saul through his disguise did know,
Yet, when the devil comes up disguis'd, she cries, The Phenix Truth did on it rest,
“ Behold! the Gods arise." And built his perfum'd nest :
In vain alas ! these outward hopes are try'd ; That right Porphyrian tree which did true logic Reason within's our only guide ; shew.
Reason, which (God be prais’d!) still walks, for all Each leaf did learned notions give,
Its old orig'nal fall; And th' apples were demonstrative:
And, since itself the boundless Godhead join'd So clear their colour and divine,
With a reasonable mind, The very shade they cast did other lights out-shine. It plainly shows that mysteries divine "Taste not,” said God, “ tis mine and angels'
May with our reason join. meat;
The holy book,like the eighth sphere, does shine A certain death doth sit,
With thousand lights of truth divine:
So numberless the stars, that to the eye
Yet Reason must assist too; for, in seas
So vast and dangerous as these, Grew so more blind, and she
Our course by stars above we cannot know, Who tempted him to this grew yet more blind Without the compass too below. than he.
Though Reason cannot through Faith's mysteries The only science man by this did get,
see, Was but to know he nothing knew :
It sees that there and such they be ; He straight his nakedness did view,
Leads to Heaven's door,and there does humbly keep, His ignorant poor estate, and was asham'd of it. And there through chinks and key-holes peep; Yet searches probabilities,
Though it, like Moses, by a sad command, And rhetoric, and fallacies,
Must not come into th' Holy Land,
Yet thither it infallibly does guide, • The name of one of the castles in Jersey.
And from afar 'tis all descry'd.