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I Do confess thou’rt smooth and fair,

And I might have been brought to love thee; But that I found the slightest pray'r

That breath could move, had power to move thee; But I can leave thee now alone As worthy to be lov'd by none. I do confess thou'rt sweet, but find

Thee such an unthrift of thy sweets,
Thy favours are but like the wind

That kisseth every thing it meets.
Then, since thou canst with more than one,
Thou’rt worthy to be kiss'd by none.
The virgin rose, that untouch'd stands,

Arm'd with its briers, how sweet it smells !
But pluck'd and strain'd through ruder hands,

Its sweet no longer with it dwells. But scent and beauty both are gone, And leaves 'drop from it one by one. Such fate, ere long, will thee betide,

When thou hast handled been a while;
With sear-flow'rs to be thrown aside,

And I shall sigh, while some will smile.
To see thy love for every one
Hath brought thee to be lov'd by none!



Tentanda via est, &c."

WHAT shall I do to be for ever known,

And make the age to come my own?
I shall, like beasts or common people, die,

Unless you write my elegy ;
Whilst others great, by being born, are grown;

Their mothers' labour, not their own.
In this scale gold, in th' other fame does lie,

The weight of that mounts this so high.
These men are Fortune's jewels, moulded bright;

Brought forth with their own fire and light : If I, her vulgar stone, for either look,

Out of myself it must be strook.
Yet I must on; What sound is 't strikes mine ear?

Sure I Fame's trumpet hear :
It sounds like the last trumpet ; for it can

Raise up the buried man.
Unpast Alps stop me; but I'll cut them all,

And march, the Muses' Hannibal.
Hence, all the Battering vanities that lay

Nets of roses in the way !
Hence, the desire of honours or estate,

And all that is not above Fate !
Hence, Love himself, that tyrant of my days!

Which intercepts my coming praise.
Come, my best friends, my books! and lead me on;

'Tis time that I were gone,
Welcome, great Stagyrite! and teach me now

All I was born to know:
Thy scholar's victories thou dost far out-do;

He conquer'd th' earth, the whole world you. Welcome, learn'd Cicero! whose blest tongue and wit

Preserves Rome's greatness yet :

Thou art the first of Orators ; only he

; Who best can praise thee, next must be. Welcome the Mantuan swan, Virgil the wise !

Whose verse walks highest, but not flies ; » Who brought green Poesy to her perfect age,

And made that Art which was a Rage. Tell me, ye mighty l'hree! what shall I do

To be like one of you?
But you have clım'd the mountain's top, there sit

On the calm flourishing head of it,
And, whilst with wearied steps we upward go,

See us, and clouds, below.


TELL me, o tell, what kind of thing is Wit,

Thou who master art of it?
For the first matter loves variety less;
Less women love't, either in love or dress.

A thousand different shapes it bears,

Comely in thousand shapes appears. Yonder we saw it plain; and here 't is now, Like spirits, in a place we know not how.

London, that vents of false ware so much store,

In no ware deceives us more;
For men, led by the colour and the shape,
Like Zeuxis' birds, fly to the painted grape.

Some things do through our judgment pass

As through a multiplying-glass ; And sometimes, if the object be too far, We take a falling meteor for a star.

Hence 't is a Wit, that greatest word of fame,

Grows such a common naine; And Wits by our creation they become, Just so as titular bishops made at Rome.

'T is not a tale, 't is not a jest

Admir'd with laughter at a feast, Nor forid talk, which can that title gain; The proofs of Wit for ever must remain.

'T is not to force some lifeless verses meet

With their five gouty feet.
All, every-where, like man's, must be the soul,
And Reason the inferior powers control.

Such were the numbers which could call

The stones into the Theban wall. Such miracles are ceas'd; and now we see No towns or houses rais'd by poetry.

Yet 't is not to adorn and gild each part;

That shows more cost than art.
Jewels at nose and lips but ill appear;
Rather than all things Wit, let none be there.

Several lights will not be seen,

If there be nothing else between. Men doubt, because they stand so thick i' th' sky, If those be stars which paint the Galaxy.

"T is not when two like words make up one noise

(Jests for Dutch men and English boys); In which who finds out Wit, the same may see In an'grams and acrostick poetry:

Much less can that have any place

At which a virgin hides ber face ;
Such dross the fire must purge away: 't is just
The author blush there, where the reader must.
T is not such lines as almost crack the stage

When Bajazet begins to rage;
Nor a tall metaphor in the bombast way;
Nor the dry chips of short-lung'd Seneca;

Nor upon all things to obtrude

And force some odd similitude.
What is it then, which, like the Power Divine,
We only can by negatives define?

In a true piece of Wit all things must be,

Yet all things there agree; As in the ark, join'd without force or strife, All creatures dwelt; all creatures that had life;

Or, as the primitive forms of all

(If we compare great things with small)
Which, without discord or confusion, lie
In that strange mirror of the Deity.
But Love, that moulds one man up out of two,

Makes me forget, and injure you :
I took you for myself, sure, when I thought
That you in any thing were to be taught.

Correct my error with thy pen;

And, if any ask me then
What thing right Wit and height of Genius is,
I'll only shew your lines, and say, 'T is this.


Immodicis brevis est atas, & rara senectus." Mart.


was a dismal and a fearful night,
Scarce could the morn drive on th' unwilling

light, When sleep, death's image, left my troubled breast,

By something liker death possest.
My eyes with tears did uncommanded flow,

And on my soul hung the dull weight

Of some intolerable fate.
What bell was that? ah me! too much I know.
My sweet companion, and my gentle peer,
Why hast thou left me thus unkindly here,
Thy end for ever, and my life, to moan?

O, thou hast left me all alone!
Thy soul and body, when Death's agony

Besieg'd around thy noble heart,

Did not with more reluctance part,
Than I, my dearest friend ! do part from thee.

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