« AnteriorContinuar »
Had you died first, a carcase she had been ;
And we your rich tomb in her face had seen;
She like the soul is gone, and you here stay
Not a live friend; but the other half of clay;
And since you act that part, as men say, here
Lies such a prince, when but one part is there ;
And do all honour : and devotion due ;
Unto the whole, so we all reverence you ;
For such a friendship who would not adore
In you, who are all what both was before,
Not all, as if some perished by this,
But so, as all in you contracted is;
As of this all, though many parts decay,
The pure which elemented them shall stay;
And though diffused, and spread in infinite,
Shall recollect, and in one all unite :
So madam, as her soul to heaven is fled,
Her flesh rests in the earth, as in the bed ;
Her virtues do, as to their proper sphere,
Return to dwell with you, of whom they were ;
As perfect motions are all circular,
So they to you, their sea, whence less streams are ;
She was all spices, you all metals ; so
In you two we did both rich Indies know;
And as no fire nor rust can spend or waste
One drachm of gold, but what was first shall last,
Though it be forced in water, earth, salt, air,
Expansed in infinite, none will impair;
So to yourself you may additions take,
But nothing can you less, or changed make.
Seek not in seeking new, to seem to doubt,
That you can match her, or not be without ;
But let some faithful book in her room be,
Yet but of Judith no such book as she.
ELEGY ON THE LORD C. SORROW, who to this house scarce knew the way : Is, Oh, heir of it, our all is his prey. This strange chance claims strange wonder, and to us Nothing can be so strange, as to weep thus;
'Tis well his life's loud speaking works deserve,
And give praise too: our cold tongues could not serve ;
"Tis well, he kept tears from our eyes before,
That, to fit this deep ill, we might have store.
Oh, if a sweet-briar climb up by a tree,
If to a paradise that transplanted be,
Or felld, and burnt for holy sacrifice,
Yet that must wither, which by it did rise,
As we for him dead: though no family
E’er rigg'd a soul for heaven's discovery
With whom more venturers more boldly dare
Venture their states, with him in joy to share.
We lose what all friends loved, him, he gains now
But life by death, which worst foes would allow,
If he could have foes, in whose practice grew
All virtues, whose name subtle schoolmen knew;
What ease, can hope that we shall see him, beget,
When we must die first, and cannot die yet?
His children are his pictures : Oh, they be
Pictures of him dead, senseless, cold as he.
Here needs no marble tomb, since he is gone,
He, and about him, his, are turn'd to stone.
ELEGY ON THE LADY MARCKHAM.
Man is the world, and death the ocean,
To which God gives the lower parts of man.
This sea environs all, and though as yet
God hath set marks and bounds 'twixt us and it,
Yet doth it roar, and gnaw, and still pretend,
And breaks our bank, whene'er it takes a friend.
Then our land waters (tears of passion) vent ;
Our waters, then, above our firmament.
(Tears which our soul doth for her sins let fall)
Take all a brackish taste, and funeral.
And even those tears which should wash sin, are sin.
We, after God's Noah, drown the world again.
Nothing but man of all envenom'd things
Doth work upon itself, with inborn stings.
Tears are false spectacles, we cannot see
Through passion's mist, what we are, or what she.
In her this sea of death hath made no breach,
But as the tide doth wash the slimy beach,
And leaves embroider'd works upon the sand :
So is her flesh refined by death's cold hand.
As men of China, after an age's stay
Do take up porcelain, where they buried clay :
So at his grave, her limbeck, which refines
The diamonds, rubies, sapphires, pearls, and mines
Of which this flesh was, her soul shall inspire
Flesh of such stuff, as God, when his last fire
Annuls this world, to recompense it, shall
Make and name then th' elixir of this all.
They say the sea, when it gains, loseth too ;
If carnal death (the younger brother) do
Usurp the body, our soul (which subject is
To th' elder death, by sin) is freed by this ;
They perish both, when they attempt the just :
For graves our trophies are, and both, death's dust.
So, unobnoxious now, she hath buried both;
For none to death sins, that to sin is loth.
Nor do they die, which are not loth to die;
So hath she this, and that virginity.
Grace was in her extremely diligent,
That kept her from sin, yet made her repent.
Of what small spots pure white complains ! Alas,
How little poison cracks a crystal glass !
She sinn'd, but just enough to let us see
That extreme truth lack'd little of a lie,
Making omissions, acts; laying the touch
Of sin, on things that sometimes may be such.
As Moses' cherubins, whose natures do
Surpass all speed, by him are winged too:
So would her soul (already in heav'n) seem then,
To climb by tears, the common stairs of men.
How fit she was for God, I am content
To speak, that death his vain haste may repent.
How fit for us, how even and how sweet,
How good in all her titles, and how meet,
To have reformed this forward heresy,
That women can no parts of friendship be ;
How moral, how divine, shall not be told, Lest they that hear her virtues, think her old; · And lest we take death's part, and make him glad
Of such a prey, and to his triumph add.
Death I recant, and say unsaid by me
What ere hath slipp'd, that might diminish thee.
Spiritual treason, atheism 'tis to say,
That any can thy summons disobey.
The earth's face is but thy table; there are set
Plants, cattle, men ; dishes for death to eat.
In a rude hunger now he millions draws
Into his bloody, or plaguy, or starved jaws.
Now he will seem to spare, and doth more wast,
Eating the best first, well preserv'd to last.
Now wantonly he spoils, and eats us not,
But breaks off friends, and lets us piecemeal rot.
Nor will this earth serve him ; he sinks the deep
Where harmless fish monastic silence keep.
Who (were death dead) by roes of living sand,
Might spunge that element, and make it land.
He rounds the air, and breaks the hymnic notes
In birds, heaven's choristers, organic throats,
Which (if they did not die) might seem to be
A tenth rank in the heavenly hierarchy.
O strong and long-liv'd death, how camest thou in?
And how without creation did'st begin?
Thou hast, and shalt see dead, before thou diest,
All the four monarchies, and antichrist.
How could I think thee nothing, that see now
In all this all, nothing else is, but thou.
Our births and life, vices, and virtues, be
Wasteful consumptions, and degrees of thee.
For we, to live, our bellows wear, and breath,
Nor are we mortal, dying, dead, but death.
And though thou beest, О mighty bird of prey,
So much reclaimed by God, that thou mist lay
All that thou kill'st at his feet, yet doth he
Reserve but few, and leaves the most to thee.
And of those few, now thou hast overthrown
One whom thy blow, makes, not ours, nor thine own.
She was more stories high : hopeless to come
To her soul, thou hast offered at her lower room.
Her soul and body was a king and court :
But thou hast both of captain mist and fort.
As houses fall not, though the king remove,
Bodies of saints rest for their souls above.
Death gets 'twixt souls and bodies such a place
As sin insinuates 'twixt just men and grace ;
Both work a separation, no divorce.
Her soul is gone to usher up her corse,
Which shall be almost another soul, for there
Bodies are purer, than best souls are here.
Because in her, her virtues did outgo
Her years, would'st thou, O emulous death, do so ?
And kill her young to thy loss? must the cost
Of beauty, and wit, apt to do harm, be lost?
What though thou found'st her proof 'gainst sins of youth?
Oh, every age a diverse sin pursueth.
Thou should'st have stay'd, and taken better hold;
Shortly ambitious, covetous, when old,
She might have proved : and such devotion
Might once have stray'd to superstition.
If all her virtues must have grown, yet might
Abundant virtue have bred a proud delight.
Had she persever'd just, there would have been
Some that would sin, misthinking she did sin.
Such as would call her friendship, love, and feign
To sociableness, a name profane :
Or sin, by tempting, or, not daring that,
By wishing, though they never told her what.
Thus might'st thou have slain more souls, had'st thou not crost
Thyself, and to triumph, thine army lost.
Yet though these ways be lost, thou hast left one,
Which is, immoderate grief that she is gone.
But we may 'scape that sin, yet weep as much :
Our tears are due, because we are not such.
Some tears that knot of friends her death must cost,
Because the chain is broke, but no link lost.