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To his Mistress.
I SWEARE, Aurora, by thy starrie eyes,

And by those golden lockes whose locke none

And by the corall of thy rosie lippes, [slippes, And by the naked snowes which beautie dyes, I sweare by all the jewels of thy mind,

Whose like yet never worldy treasure bought,

Thy solide judgement and thy generous thought, Which in this darkened age have clearely shined; I sweare by those, and by my spotlesse love,

And by my secret yet most fervent fires,

That I have never nursed but chast desires, And such as modestie might well approve.

Then since I love those virtuous parts in thee, Shouldst thou not love this vertuous mind in me?


I KNOW that all beneath the moon decays,

And what by mortals in this world is brought

In time's great periods shall return to nought; That fairest states have fatal nights and days. I know that all the Muses' heavenly lays,

With toil of sprite which are so dearly bought,

As idle sounds, of few or none are sought; That there is nothing lighter than vain praise. I know frail beauty's like the hawthorn flower,

To which one morn oft birth and death affords;

That love a jarring is of mind's accords, Where sense and will bring under reason's power;

Know what I list, this all cannot me move,
But that, alas! I both must write and love.


SLEEP, Silence' child, sweet father of soft rest, Prince whose approach peace to all mortals

brings, Indifferent host to shepherds and to kings, Sole comforter of minds which are oppress'd ;

Lo, by thy charming rod all breathing things Lie slumbering, with forgetfulness possess’d,

And yet o'er me to spread thy drowsy wings Thou sparest, alas! who cannot be thy guest. Since I am thine, O come, but with that face

To inward light which thou art wont to show,

With feigned solace ease a true-felt woe; Or if, deaf god, thou do deny that grace,

Come as thou wilt, and what thou wilt beI long to kiss the image of my death. [queath,


To hear my plaints, fair river crystalline,

Thou in a silent slumber seem'st to stay ; Delicious flowers, lily and columbine,

Ye bow your heads when I my woes display;

Forests, in you the myrtle, palm, and bay Have had compassion, listening to my groans ; The winds with sighs have solemnized my moans

'Mong leaves, which whisper'd what they could

not say;

The caves, the rocks, the hills, the sylvans'thrones

(As if even pity did in them appear) Have at my sorrow rent their ruthless stones:

Each thing I find hath sense except my dear, Who doth not think I love, or will not know My grief, perchance delighting in my woe.


Of mortal glory, O soon darkened ray!

( winged joys of man, more swift than wind ! O fond desires, which in our fancies stray!

O traitorous hopes, which do our judgments Lo, in a flash that light is gone away [blind !

Which dazzle did each eye, delight each mind, And with that sun, from whence it came, com

bined, Now makes more radiant heaven's eternal day.

Let Beauty now bedew her cheeks with tears, Let widow'd Music only roar and groan, [spheres,

Poor Virtue, get thee wings, and mount the For dwellingplace on earth for thee is none :

Death hath thy temple razed, Love's empire foiled, The world of honour, worth, and sweetness spoil'd.


O FATE, conjured to pour your worst on me!

O rigorous rigour which doth all confound !
With cruel hands ye have cut down the tree,
And fruit with leaves have scatter'd on the

A little space of earth my love doth bound;
That beauty which did raise it to the sky,
Turn'd in disdained dust, now low doth lie,

Deaf to my plaints, and senseless of my wound. Ah! did I live for this? Ah! did I love?

And was't for this (fierce powers) she did excel, That ere she well the sweets of life did prove, She should, too dear a guest! with darkness

dwell? Weak influence of Heaven! what fair is wrought Falls in the prime, and passeth like a thought.


SWEET soul, which in the April of thy years,

For to enrich the heaven madest poor this round,

And now, with flaming rays of glory crown'd, Most bless'd abides above the sphere of spheres ;

If heavenly laws, alas ! have not thee bound From looking to this globe that all upbears,

If ruth and pity there above be found, 0, deign to lend a look unto these tears : Do not disdain (dear ghost) this sacrifice ;

And though I raise not pillars to thy praise, My offerings take, let this for me suffice,

My heart a living pyramid I'll raise : And whilst kings'tombs with laurels flourish green, Thine shall with myrtles and these flowers be



SWEET Spring, thou comest with all thy goodly train,

[flowers, Thy head with flames, thy mantle bright with The zephyrs curl the green locks of the plain, The clouds for joy in pearls weep down their showers.

[hours Sweet Spring, thou comest—but, ah! my pleasant And happy days with thee come not again; The sad memorials only of my pain [sours.

Do with thee come, which turn my sweets to Thou art the same that still thou wert before, Delicious, lusty, amiable, fair;

[air But she whose breath embalm’d thy wholesome Is gone ; nor gold nor gems can her restore.

Neglected Virtue, seasons go and come,
While thine forgot lie closed in a tomb.


My lute, be as thou wert when thou didst grow

With thy green mother in some shady grove,

When immelodious winds but made thee move, And birds their ramage did on thee bestow. Since that dear voice which did thy sounds ap

prove, Which wont in such harmonious strains to flow,

Is reft from earth to tune those spheres above, What art thou but a harbinger of woe? Thy pleasing notes be pleasing notes no more,

But orphans' wailings to the fainting ear,

Each stroke a sigh, each sound draws forth a For which be silent as in woods before.

[tear; Or if that any hand to touch thee deign, Like widow'd turtle still her loss complain.


SWEET bird, that sing'st away the early bours,

Of winters past or coming void of care,

Well pleased with delights which present are, Fair seasons, budding sprays, sweet smelling

flowers; To rocks, to springs, to rills, from leavy bowers

Thou thy Creator's goodness dost declare,

And what dear gifts on thee he did not spare, A stain to human sense in sin that lours ! What soul can be so sick which by thy songs

(Attired in sweetness) sweetly is not driven Quite to forget earth’s turmoils, spites, and wrongs,

And lift a reverend eye and thought to heaven? Sweet, artless songster, thou my mind dost raise To airs of spheres, yea, and to angel's lays.


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