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The tree of life, when it in Eden stood,
Did its immortal head to heaven rear ;
It lasted a tall cedar, till the flood;
Now a small thorny shrub it does appear ;

Nor will it thrive too everywhere:
It always here is freshest seen ;
'Tis only here an evergreen.
If, through the strong and beauteous fence

Of temperance and innocence,
And wholesome labours, and a quiet mind,

Any diseases passage find,

They must not think here to assail
A land unarm’d, or without a guard ;
They must fight for it, and dispute it hard,

Before they can prevail :

Scarce any plant is growing here,
Which against death some weapon does not bear,

Let cities boast, that they provide
For life the ornaments of pride ;
But 'tis the country and the field,
That furnish it with staff and shield.1

-staj and shield] i. e. bread and physic; the former, to sustain man's life, and the latter, to guara it against disease and sickness.

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Where does the wisdom and the power divine
In a more bright and sweet reflection shine ?
Where do we finer strokes and colours see
Of the Creator's real poetry,

Than when we with attention look
Upon the third day's volume of the book ?
If we could open and intend our eye,

We all, like Moses, should espy
Ev'n in a bush the radiant Deity.
But we despise these his inferior ways
(Though no less full of miracle and praise):

Upon the flowers of heaven we gaze ;
The stars of earth 1 no wonder in us raise,

Though these perhaps do more, than they,

The life of mankind sway, 1-flowers of heaven--stars of earth] A poetical conversion, much to the taste of Mr. Cowley ; but the prettier and easier, because many plants and powers are of a radiate form, and are called stars, not in the poet's vocabulary only, but in that of the botanist and Aorist : as, on the other hand, the stars of heaven

- Blushing in bright diversities of day," as the poet says of the garden's bloomy bed, very naturally present themselves under the idea, and take the name, of flowers.

Although no part of mighty nature be
More stor’d with beauty, power, and mystery;
Yet to encourage human industry,
God has so order'd, that no other part
Such space and such dominion leaves for art.

X

We nowhere art do so triumphant see,

As when it grafts or buds the tree : In other things we count it to excel, If it a docile scholar can appear To nature, and but imitate her well; It overrules, and is her master here, It imitates her Maker's power divine, And changes her sometimes, and sometimes does refine : It does, like grace, the fallen tree restore To its blest state of Paradise before : Who would not joy to see His conquering hand O’er all the vegetable world command? And the wild giants of the wood receive

What law He's pleased to give ? He bids th' ill-natured crab produce The gentler apple's winy juice;

:

The golden fruit, that worthy is
Of Galatea's purple kiss ; 1
He does the savage hawthorn teach
To bear the medlar and the

pear; He bids the rustic plum to rear

A noble trunk, and be a peach.
Even Daphne's coyness he does mock,
And weds the cherry to her stock,
Though she refus'd Apollo's suit ;
Even she, that chaste and virgin tree,

Now wonders at herself, to see
That she's a mother made, and blushes in her fruit.

XI

Methinks I see great Diocletian walk
In the Salonian garden's noble shade,
Which by his own imperial hands was made :
I see him smile (methinks) as he does talk
With the ambassadors, who come in vain,

T'entice him to a throne again.

1

—that worthy is Of Galatea's purple kiss] An idea, conceived, and expressed, in the best manner of Shakespeare.

If I, my friends (said he) should to you show
All the delights, which in these gardens grow;
'Tis likelier much, that you should with me stay,
Than 'tis, that you

should

carry me away : And trust me not, my friends, if

I walk not here with more delight, Than ever, after the most happy fight, In triumph to the capitol I trod, To thank the gods, and to be thought, myself almost

a god.

every day,

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