« AnteriorContinuar »
And so in that capacity remove
All jealousies 'twixt prince and subjects' love,
Thou could'st no title to this triumph have,
Thou didst intrude on death, usurp’st a grave.
That (though victoriously) thou hadst fought as yet
But with thine own affections, with the heat
Of youth's desires, and colds of ignorance,
But till thou should’st successfully advance
Thine arms 'gainst foreign enemies, which are
Both envy, and acclamation popular,
(For both these engines equally defeat,
Though by a divers mine, those which are great,)
Till then thy war was but a civil war,
For which to triumph, none admitted are ;
No more are they, who though with good success,
In a defensive war, their power express.
Before men triumph, the dominion
Must be enlarged, and not preserved alone;
Why should'st thou then, whose battles were to win
Thyself, from those straits nature put thee in,
And to deliver up to God that state,
Of which he gave thee the vicariate,
(Which is thy soul and body) as entire
As he, who take endeavours, doth require,
But didst not stay, to enlarge his kingdom too,
By making others, what thou didst, to do:
Why should'st thou triumph now, when heaven no more
Hath got, by getting thee, than it had before ?
For heaven and thou, even when thou lived'st here,
Of one another in possession were ;
But this from triumph most disables thee,
That that place which is conquered, must be
Left safe from present war, and likely doubt
Of imminent commotions to break out.
And hath he left us so? or can it be
His territory was no more than he ?
No, we were all his charge; the Diocis
Of ev'ry exemplar man, the whole world is,
And he was joined in commission
With tutelar angels, sent to every one.
But though this freedom to upbraid, and chide
Him who triumphed, were lawful, it was tied
With this, that it might never reference have
Unto the senate, who this triumph gave;
Men might at Pompey jest, but they might not
At that authority, by which he got
Leave to triumph, before, by age, he might:
So, though, triumphant soul, I dare to write,
Moved with a reverential anger, thus,
That thou so early would'st abandon us;
Yet I am far from daring to dispute
With that great sovereignty, whose absolute
Prerogative hath thus dispensed with thee,
'Gainst nature's laws, which just impugners be
Of early triumphs ; and I (though with pain)
Lessen our loss, to magnify thy gain
Of triumph, when I say, it was more fit,
That all men should lack thee, than thou lack it.
Though then in our time, be not suffered
That testimony of love, unto the dead,
To die with them, and in their graves be hid,
As Saxon wives, and French soldurii* did;
And though in no degree I can express,
Grief in great Alexander's great excess,
Who at his friend's death, made whole towns divest
Their walls and bulwarks which became them best :
Do not, fair soul, this sacrifice refuse,
That in thy grave I do inter my Muse,
Who, by my grief, great as thy worth, being cast
Behind hand, yet hath spoke, and spoke her last.
ELEGY On Prince Henry. Look to me faith, and look to my faith, God; For both my centres feel this period. Of weight one centre, one of greatness is; And reason is that centre, faith is this ; For into our reason flow, and there do end All, that this natural world doth comprehend : Quotidian things, and equidistant hence, Shut in, for man, in one circumference. But for th' enormous greatnesses, which are So disproportioned, and so angular, As is God's essence, place and providence, Where, how, when, what souls do, departed hence, These things (eccentric else) on faith do strike ; Yet neither all, nor upon all, alike. For reason, put to her best extension, Almost meets faith, and makes both centres one. And nothing ever came so near to this, As contemplation of that prince we miss. For all that faith might credit mankind could, Reason still seconded, that this prince would. If then least moving of the centre, make More, than if whole hell belched, the world to shake, What must this do, centres distracted so, That we see not what to believe or know? Was it not well believed till now, that he, Whose reputation was an ecstasy, On neighbour states, which knew not why to wake, Till he discovered what ways he would take ; For whom what princes angled, when they tried, Met a torpedo, and were stupified ; And others' studies, how he would be bent, Was his great father's greatest instrument, And activ'st spirit, to convey and tie This soul of peace, through Christianity; Was it not well believed, that he would make This general peace, th’ Eternal overtake, And that his times might have stretched out so far, As to touch those, of which they emblems are ?
For to confirm this just belief, that now
The last days came, we saw heaven did allow,
That, but from his aspect and exercise,
In peaceful times, rumours of war did rise.
But now this faith is heresy: we must
Still stay, and vex our great-grandmother, dust.
Oh, is God prodigal? Hath he spent his store
Of plagues, on us, and only now, when more
Would ease us much, doth he grudge misery;
And will not let's enjoy our curse, to die?
As for the earth, thrown lowest down of all,
T'were an ambition to desire to fall,
So God, in our desire to die, doth know
Our plot for ease, in being wretched so.
Therefore we live; though such a life we have,
As but so many mandrakes on his grave.
What had his growth, and generation done,
When, what we are, his putrefaction
Sustains in us; earth, which griefs animate ;
Nor hath our world now, other soul than that.
And could grief get so high as heaven, that quire,
Forgetting this their new joy, would desire
(With grief to see him) he had stayed below,
To rectify our errors they foreknow.
Is th' other centre, reason, faster then?
Where should we look for that, now we are not men?
For if our reason be our connexion
Of causes, now to us there can be none.
For, as if all the substances were spent,
'Twere madness, to inquire of accident,
So is't to look for reason, he being gone,
The only subject reason wrought upon.
If fate have such a chain, whose divers links
Industrious man discerneth, as he thinks,
When miracle doth come, and so steal in
A new link, man knows not, where to begin :
At a much deader fault must reason be,
Death having broke off such a link as he.
But now, for us, with busy proof to come,
That we have no reason, would prove we had some.
So would just lamentations : therefore we
May safelier say, that we are dead, than he.
So, if our griefs we do not well declare,
We have double excuse ; he is not dead ; and we are.
Yet I would not die yet; for though I be
Too narrow, to think him as he is he,
(Our soul's best baiting, and mid-period,
In her long journey, of considering God)
Yet, (no dishonour) I can reach him thus,
As he embraced the fires of love, with us.
Oh may I, (since I live) but see, or hear,
That she-intelligence which moved this sphere,
I pardon fate my life: whoe'er thou be
Which hast the noble conscience thou art she,
I conjure thee by all the charms he spoke,
By the oaths, which only you two never broke,
By all the souls ye sighed, that if you see
These lines, you wish, I knew your history,
So much, as you two mutual heavens were here,
I were an angel, singing what you were.
To Sir Robert Carr. I presume you rather try what you can do in me, than what I can do in verse, you know my uttermost when it was best, and even then I did best when I had least truth for my subjects, in this present case there is so much truth as it defeats all poetry. Call therefore this paper by what name you will, and, if it be not worthy of you nor of him, we will smother it, and be it your sacrifice. If you had commanded me to have waited on his body to Scotland and preached there, I would have embraced your obligation with much alacrity; but I thank you that you would command me that which I was loather to do, for even that hath given a tincture of merit to the obedience of Your poor friend and servant in Christ Jesus,
An HYMN TO THE SAINTS, AND TO MARQUESS HAMILTON.
WHETHER that soul which now comes up to you
Fill any former rank or make a new,
Whether it take a name named there before,
Or be a name itself, and order more
Than was in heaven till now; (for may not he
Be so, if every several angel be