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PO E MS.
I. LA CORONA. Deign at my hands this crown of prayer and praise, Weaved in my low devout melancholy, Thou which of good, hast, yea art treasury, All changing unchanged Ancient of days, But do not, with a vile crown of frail bays, Reward my muses with sincerity, But what thy thorny crown gained, that give me A crown of glory, which doth flower always ; The ends crown our works, but thou crown'st our ends, For at our ends begins our endless rest, The first last end, now zealously possest, With a strong sober thirst, my soul attends. It is time that heart and voice be lifted high, Salvation to all that will is nigh.
II. ANNUNCIATION. Salvation to all that will is nigh, That All, which always is All everywhere, Which cannot sin, and yet all sins must bear, Which cannot die, yet cannot chose but die, Lo, faithful Virgin, yields himself to lie In prison, in thy womb, and though he there Can take no sin, nor thou give, yet he will wear Taken from thence, flesh, which deaths force may try. Ere by the spheres time was created, thou Wast in his mind, who is thy Son, and Brother, Whom thou conceives, conceived ; yea thou art now Thy Maker's maker, and thy Father's mother, Thou hast light in dark, and shut in little room, Immensity cloistered in thy dear womb.
III. Nativity. IMMENSITY cloistered in thy dear womb, Now leaves his well beloved imprisonment, There he hath made himself to his intent Weak enough, now into our world to come ; But Oh, for thee, for him, hath the inn no room? Yet lay him in this stall, and from the Orient, Stars, and wise men will travel to prevent The effects of Herod's jealous general doom ; Seest thou, my soul, with thy faith's eyes, how he Which fills all place, yet none holds him, doth lio? Was not his pity towards thee wondrous high, That would have need to be pitied by thee? Kiss him, and with him into Egypt go, With his kind mother, who partakes thy woe.
IV. Temple. With his kind mother who partakes thy woe, Joseph turn back; see where your child doth sit, Blowing, yea blowing out those sparks of wit, Which himself on the doctor's did bestow; The Word but lately could not speak, and lo It suddenly speaks wonders, whence comes it, That all which was, and all which should be writ, A shallow seeming child, should deeply know? His Godhead was not soul to his manhood, Nor had time mellow'd him to this ripeness, But as for one which hath a long task, it is good, With the sun to begin his business, He in his ages morning thus began By miracles exceeding power of man.
V. CRUCIFYING. By miracles exceeding power of man, He faith in some, envy in some begat, For, what weak spirits admire, ambitious hate; In both affections many to him ran, But Oh! the worst are most, they will and can, Alas, and do, unto the immaculate, Whose creature Fate is, now prescribe a Fate, Measuring self-life's infinity to span,
Nay to an inch, lo, where condemned he
TOSS, Wonosoby and bye..
Moist, with one drop of thy blood, my dry soul,
Salute the last, and everlasting day,
VIII. As due by many titles I resign Myself to thee, O God; first I was made By thee, and for thee, and when I was decayed Thy blood bought that, the which before was thine, I am thy son, made with thyself to shine, Thy servant, whose pains thou hast still repaid, Thy sheep, thine Image, and till I betrayed Myself, a temple of thy Spirit divine ; Why doth the devil then usurp on me! Why doth he steal, nay ravish, that's thy right? Except thou rise and for thine own work fight, Oh I shall soon despair, when I do see That thou lov'st mankind well, yet wilt not chose me. And Satan hates me, yet is loth to loose me.
IX. Oh my black soul ! now thou art summon'd By sickness, death's herald, and champion ; Thou art like a pilgrim, which abroad hath done Treason, and durst not turn to whence he is filed, Or like a thief, which till death's doom be read, Wisheth himself deliver'd from prison ; But damn’d and haled to execution, Wisheth that still he might be imprisoned ; Yet grace, if thou repent, thou canst not lack; But who shall give thee that grace to begin? Oh make thyself with holy mourning black, And red with blushing, as thou art with sin ; Or wash thee in Christ's blood, which hath this might, That being red, it dyes red souls to white.
This is my play's last scene; here heavens appoint