Imagens das páginas
PDF

Nay, and, if from a deity
So much deified as I,
It sound not too profane and odd,
Oh, my master and my god !
For 'tis true, most mighty poet!
(Though I like not men should know it)
i am in naked Nature less,
Less by much, than in thy dress.
All thy verse is softer far
Than the downy feathers are
Of my wings, or of my arrows,
Of my mother's doves or sparrows,
Sweet as lovers' freshest kisses,
Or their riper following blisses,
Graceful, cleanly, smooth, and round,
All with Venus' girdle bound;
And thy life was all the while
Kind and gentle as thy style,
The smooth-pac'd hours of every day
Glided numerously away.
Like thy verse each hour did pass;
Sweet and short, like that, it was.

Some do but their youth allow me,
Just what they by Nature owe me,
The time that's mine, and not their own,
The certain tribute of my crown:
When they grow old, they grow to be
Too busy, or too wise, for me.
Thou wert wiser, and didst know
None too wise for love can grow;
Love was with thy life entwin'd,
Close as heat with fire is join'd;
A powerful brand prescrib'd the date
Ofthine, like Meleager's, fate.
Th' antiperistasis of age
More enflam'd thy amorous rage;
Thy silver hairs yielded me more
Than even golden curls before.

Had I the power of creation, As I have of generation, Where I the matter must obey, And cannot work plate out of clay, My creatures should be all like thee, 'Tis thou shouldst their idea be: They, like thee, should thoroughly hate Business, honour, title, state; Other wealth they should not know, But what my living mines bestow; The pomp of kings, they should confess, At their crownings, to be less Than a lover's humblest guise, When at his mistress' feet he lies. Rumour they no more should mind Than men safe landed do the wind; Wisdom itself they should not hear, When it presumes to be severe; Beauty alone they should admire, Nor look at Fortune's vain attire,

| Nor ask what parents it can shew;
With dead or old 't has nought to do.
They should not lore yet all, or any,
But very much and very many:
All their life should gilded be
With mirth, and wit, and gaiety;
Well remembering and applying
The necessity of dying. , .
Their chearful heads should always wear
All that crowns the flowery year:
They should always laugh, and sing,
And dance, and strike th' harmonious string;
Verse should from their tongue so flow,
As if it in the mouth did grow,
As swiftly answering their command,
As tunes obey the artful hand.
And whilst I do thus discover
Th' ingredients of a happy lover,
"Tis, my Anacreon! for thy sake
I of the Grape no mention make.

Till my Anacreon by thee fell,
Cursed Plant! I lov'd thee well;
And 'twas oft my wanton use
To dip my arrows in thy juice.
Cursed Plant ! 'tis true, I see,
Th' old report that goes of thee-
That with giants' blood the Earth
Stain's and poison'd gave thee birth;
And now thou wreak'st thy ancient spite
On men in whom the gods delight.
Thy patron, Bacchus, 'tis no wonder,
Was brought forth in flames and thunder ;
In rage, in quarrels, and in fights,
Worse than his tigers, he delights ;
In all our Heaven I think there be
No such ill-natur'd god as he.
Thou pretendest, traiterous Wine !
To be the Muses' friend and mine :
With love and wit thou dost begin,
False fires, alas ! to draw us in;
Which, if our course we by them keep,
Misguide to madness or to sleep :
Sleep were well; thou 'ast learnt a way
To death itself now to betray..

It grieves me when I see what fate
Does on the best of mankind wait.
Poets or lovers let them be,
'Tis neither love nor poesy
Can arm, against Death's smallest dart,
The poet's head or lover's heart;
But when their life, in its declive,
Touches th' inevitable line,
All the world's mortal to them then,
And wine is aconite to men ;
Nay, in Death's hand, the grape-stone proves
As strong as thunder is in Jove's.

VERSES

WRITTEN ON

SEVERAL OCCASIONS'.

CHRIST'S PASSION,

How the eternal Father did bestow

His own eternal Son as ransom for his foe. CAXIN OUT OF A GREEK ODE, WRITTEN BY MR. I'll sing aloud, that all the world may hear

The triumph of the buried Conqueror. MASTERS, OF NEW-COLLEGE IN OXFORD.

How Hell was by its prisoner captive led, Exough, my Muse! of earthly things,

And the great slayer, Death, slain by the dead.

Methinks, I hear of murdered men the voice, Take up thy lute, and to it bind

Mixt with the murderers' confused noise, Loud and everlasting strings;

Sound from the top of Calvary; And on them play, and to them sing,

My greedy eyes fly up the hill, and sec The happy mournful stories,

Who 'tis hangs there the midmost of the three ; The lamentable glories,

Oh, how unlike the others he ! Of the great crucified King.

Look, how he bends his gentle head with blessings Mountainous heap of wonders! which dost rise

from the tree! Till Earth thou joinest with the skies!

His gracious hands, ne'er stretch'd but to do good, Too large at bottom, and at top too high,

Are nail'd to the infamous wood ! To be half seen by mortal eye!

And sinful man does fondly bind How shall I grasp this boundless thing? | The arms, which he extends t'embrace all humanWhat shall I play; what shall I sing?

kind. I'll sing the mighty riddle of mysterious love,

Unhappy man! canst thou stand by and see Which neither wretched men below, nor blessed

All this as patient as he spirits above,

Since he thy sins does bear, With all their comments can explain;

Make thou his sufferings thine own, Ha all the whole world's life to die did not dis

And weep, and sigh, and groan, dain!

And beat thy breast, and tear
I'll sing the searchless depths of the compassion

Thy garments and thy hair,
Divine,

And let thy grief, and let thy love,
The depths unfathom'd yet

Through all thy bleeding bowels move. By reason's plummet and the line of wit; Dost thou not see thy prince in purple clad all o'er, Too light the plummet, and too short the line! Not purple brought from the Sidonian shore,

But made at home with richer gore? These verses were not included among those Dost thou not see the roses which adorn which Mr. Cowley himself styled Miscellanies; | The thorny garland by him worn ? tot were classed by Bishop Sprat under the title Dost thou not see the livid traces by which they are bere distinguished. N.

Of the sharp scourges' rude embraces?

If yet thou feelest not the smart

Where'er I see an excellence,
Of thorns and scourges in thy heart; I must admire to see thy well knit sense,
If that be yet not crucified;

Thy numbers gentle, and thy fancies high;
Lok on bis hands, look on his feet, look on his side! Those as thy forehead smooth, these sparkling as
Oj en, oh ! open wide the fountains of thine eyes,

thine eye. And let them call

'Tis solid, and 'tis manly all, Their stock of moisture forth where'er it lies!

Or rather 'tis angelical ;
For this will ask it all."

For, as in angels, we "Twould all, alas ! too little be,

Do in thy verses see Though thy salt tears come from a sea.

Both improv'd sexes eminently meet; Canst thou deny him this, when he

They are than man more strong, and more than woHas open'd all his vital springs for thee?

man sweet. Take heed; for by his side's mysterious food

They talk of Nine, I know not who,
May well be understood,

Female chimeras, that o'er poets reign;
That he will still require some waters to his blood. I ne'er could find that fancy true,

But have invok'd them oft, I'm sure, in vain:

They talk of Sappho; but, alas ! the shame!
ODE.

Ill-manners suil the lustre of her fame;
Orinda's inward virtue is so bright,

That, like a lantern's fair enclosed light,
ON ORINDA'S POEMS.

It through the paper shines where she does write.

Honour and friendship, and the generous scorn We allow'd you beauty, and we did submit

Of things for which we were not born
To all the tyrannies of it;

(Things that can only by a fond disease, Ah ! cruel sex, will you depose us too in wit?

Like that of girls, our vicious stomachs please) Orinda ? does in that too reign;

Are the instructive subjects of her pen; Does man behind her in proud triumph draw,

And, as the Roman victory
And cancel great Appollo's Salique law,

Taught our rude land arts and civility,
We our old title plead in vain,

At once she overcomes, enslaves, and betters, men.
Man may be bead, but woman's now the brain.
Verse was Love's fire-arms heretofore,

But Rome with all her arts could ne'er inspire In Beauty's campit was not known ;

A female breast with such a fire : Too many arms besides that conqueror bore:

The warlike Amazonian train, 'Twas the great cannon we brought down

| Who in Elysium now do peaceful reign, T assault a stubborn town;

And Wit's mild enipire before arms prefer,
Orinda first did a bold sally make,

Hope 'twill be settled in their sex by her.
Our strongest quarter take,

Merlin, the seer, (and sure he would not lye,
And so successful prov'd, that she

In such a sacred company) Turn'd upon Love himself his own artillery.

Does prophecies of learn'd Orinda show,

Which he had darkly spoke so long ago;
Women, as if the body were their whole,

Er'n Boadicia's angry ghost
Did that, and not the soul,

Forgets her own misfortune and disgrace,
Transmit to their posterity;

And to her injur'd daughters now does boast, If in it sometime they conceiv'd,

That Rome's o'ercome at last, by a woman of her Th’abortive issue never liv'd.

race,
'Twere shame and pity', Orinda, if in thee
A spirit so rich, so noble, and so high,

ODE
Should unmanur'd or barren lie.
But thou industriously hast sow'd and tillid

UPON OCCASION OF A COPY OF VERSES OF MY LORD
The fair and fruitful field;

BROGHILL's.
And 'tis a strange increase that it does yield.

Be gone (said I) ingrateful Muse! and see
As, when the happy gods above

What others thou canst fool, as well as me.
Meet altogether at a feast,

Since I grew man, and wiser ought to be,
A secret joy unspeakable does move

My business and my hopes I left for thee: In their great mother Cybele's contented breast :

For thee (which was more hardly given away) With no less pleasure thou, metbinks, should see,

I I left, even when a boy, my play. This, thy no less immortal progeny ;

But say, ingrateful mistress! say, And in their birth thou no one touch dost find,

What for all this, what didst thou ever pay?
Of th' ancient curse to woman-kind :

Thou 'It say, perhaps, that riches are
Though brig'st not forth with pain ;

Not of the growth of lands where thou do st trade, It neither travail is vor labour of the brain :

And I as well my country might upbraid
So easily they from thee come,

Because I have no vineyard there.
And there is so much room

Well : but in love thou dost pretend to reign;
In the unexhausted and unfathom'd womb,
That, like the Holland countess, thou may'st bear

There thine the power and lordship is;

Thou bad'st me write, and write, and write again; A child for every day of all the fertile year.

'Twas such a way as could not miss. Thou dost my wonder, wouldst my envy, raise, I, like a fool, did thee obey : P to be prais'd I lov’d more than to praise :

I wrote, and wrote, but still I wrote in rain;

For, after all my expense of wit and pain, ? Mrs. Catharine Phillips,

| A rich, unwriting hand, carried the prize away.

Thus I complain'd, and strait the Muse reply'd, | Instead of my own likeness, only find
That she had given me fame.

The bright idea there of the great writer's mind?
Bounty immense! and that too must be try'd
When I myself am nothing but a name.

Who now, what reader does not strive
T invalidate the gift whilst we're alive?

ODE.
For, when a poet now himself doth show, -
As if he were a common foe:

MR. COwley's BOOK PRESENTING ITSELF TO THE All draw upon him, all around,

UNIVERSITY LIBRARY OF OXFORD. And every part of him they wound,

HAIL, Learning's Pantheon ! Hail, the sacred ark Happy the man that gives the deepest blow:

Where all the world of science does embark ! And this is all, kind Muse! to thee we owe.

Which ever shall withstand, and hast so long withThen in rage I took,

stood, And out at window threw,

Insatiate Time's devouring flood. Ovid and Horace, all the chiming crew;

Hail, tree of knowiedge! thy leaves fruit! which ! Homer himself went with them too;

well Hardly escap'd the sacred Mantuan book :

Dost in the midst of Paradise arise, I iny own offspring, like Agave, tore,

Oxford ! the Muse's Paradise, And I resolv'd, nay, and I think I swore,

From which may never sword the bless'd expel ! That I no more the ground would till and sow, Hail, bank of all past ages! where they lie Where only fowery weeds instead of corn did grow. | Tenrich with interest posterity! When (sce the subtile ways which Fate does find

Hail, Wit's illustrious galaxy! Rebellious man to bind!

Where thousand lights into one brightness spread; Just to the work for which he is assign'd)

Hail, living University of the dead ! The Muse caine in more cbearful than before, Unconfus's Babel of all tongues ! which e'er And bade me quarrel with her now no more: The mighty linguist, Fame, or Time, the mighty Lo! thy reward ! !ook, here and see

traveller, What I have made” (said she)

That could speak, or this could hcar. " My lover and belor'd, my Brogbill, do for thee!

Majestic monument and pyramid !
Though thy own verse no lasting fame can give, Where still the shades of parted so:ils abide
Thou shalt at least in his for ever live.

Embalm'd in verse ; exalted souls which now
Whai critics, the great Hectors now in wit,

Enjoy those arts they wou'd so well below; Who rant and challenge all men that have writ,

Which now all wonders plainly see, Will dare l'oppose thee, when

That have been, are, or are to be, Broghill in thy defence has drawn his conquering

In the mysterious library,

The beatific Bodley of the Deity ; I rose and bow'd my head,

Will you into your sacred throng admit And pardon ask'd for all that I had said :

The meanest British wit ? Well satisfy'd and proud,

You, general-council of the priests of Fame, I strait resolvid, and solemnly I vow'd,

Will you not murmur and disdain,
That from her service pow I ne'er would part;

That I a place among you claim,
So strongly large rewards work on a grateful heart! | The humblest deacon of her train?
Nothing so soon the drooping spirits can raise Will you allow me th' honourable chain?
As praises froin the men whom all men praise :

The chain of ornament, which here 'Tis the best cordial, and which only those

Your noble prisoners proudly wear; Who have at home th' ingredients can compose ;

A chain which will more pleasant seem to me A cordial that restores our fainting breath,

Than all my own Pincaric liberty ! And keeps up life e'en after death!

Will ye to bind me with those mighty names submit, The only danger is, lest it should be

Like an Apocrypha with Holy Writ?
Too strong a remedy ;

Whatever happy book is chained here,
Lest, in removing cold, it should beget

No other place or people need to fear;
Too violent a heat;

His chain's a passport to go every where.
And into madness turn the lethargy,

As when a seat in Heaven
Ah! gracious Gorl! that I might see

Is to an unmalicious sinner given,
A time when it were dangerous for me

Who, casting round his wondering eye,
To be o'er-heat with praise !

Does none but patriarchs and apostles there espy; But I within me bear, alas! too great allays.

Martyrs who did their lives bestow, 'Tis said, Apelles, when he Venus drew,

And saints, who martyrs liv'd below; Did naked woinen for his pattern view,

With trembling and ainazement he begins And with his powerful fancy did refine

To recollect his frailties past and sins; Their human shapes into a form divine :

He doubts almost his station there;
None who had sat could her own picture sce, His soul says to itself, “ How came I here ?»
Or say, one part was drawn for me:

It fares no otherwise with me,
So, though this nobler painter, when he writ, When I myself with conscious wonder see
Was pleas'd to think it fit

Amidst this purify'd elected company.
That my book should before him sit,

With hardship they, and pain,
Not as a cause, but an occasion, to his wit;

Did to this happiness attain : Yet what have I to boast, or to apply

No la rou: i, nor merits, can pretend; To my advantage out of it; since I

| I think pr.destination only was my friend.

[ocr errors]

Ah, that my author had been ty'd like me. I Than those have done or seen,
To such a place and such a company !

Ev'n since they goddesses and this a star has been) Instead of several countries, several mnen,

As a reward for all her labour past, And business, which the Muses hate,

Is made the seat of rest at last.' He might have then improv'd that small estate

Let the case now quite alter'd be, Which Nature sparingly did to him give;

And, as thou wentest abroad the world to sce, He might perhaps have thriven then,

Let the world now come to see thee! And settled upon me, his child, somewhat to live.

The world will do 't ; for curiosity "T had happier been for him, as well as me; Does, no less than devotion, pilgrims make; For when all, alas! is done,

And I myself, w'io now luve quiet tov. We Books, I mean, you Books, will prove to be As much almost as any Cha'r can do, The best and uoblest conversation;

Would yet a journey take, For, though some errours will get in,

An old wheel of that chariot to see, Like tinctures of original sin;

Which Phaeton so rashly brake : Yet sure we from our fathers' wit

Yet what could that say more than these remains of Draw all the strength and spirit of it,

Drake?
Leaving the grosser parts for conversation, Great Relic! thou too, in this port of ease,
As the best blood of man's employ'd in generation, Hast still one way of making voyages;

The breath of Fame, like an auspicious gale
ODE,

(The great trade-wind which ne'er does fail)

Shall drive thee round the world, and thou shalt run, SITTING AND DRINKING IN THE CHAIR MADE OUT OF

As long around it as the Sun. THE RELICS OF SIR FRANCIS DRAKE'S SHIP. The streights of Time too narrow are for thee;

Launch forth into an undiscover'd sea, Cheer up, my mates, the wind does fairly blow,

And steer the endlest course of vast Eternity ! Clap on more sail, and never spare;

| Take for thy sail this verse, and for thy pilot me! Farewell all lands, for now we are

In the wide sea of drink, and merrily we go.
Bless me, 'tis hot! another bowl of wine,
And we shall cut the burning line :

UPON THE DEATH OF
Hey, boys ! she scuds away, and by my head I know THE EARL OF BALCARRES.

We round the world are sailing now.
What dull men are those that tarry at home, Tis folly all, that can be said,
When abroad they might wantonly roam,

By living mortals, of th’immortal dead,
And gain such experience, and spy too And I'm afraid they laugh at the rain tears we shed.
Such countries and wonders, as I do!

- 'Tis as if we, who stay behind But prythee, good pilot, take heed what you do, In expectation of the wind, And fail not to touch at Peru !

Should pity those who pass'd this streight before, With gold there the vessel we'll store,

And touch the universal shore. And never, and never be poor,

Ah, happy man! who art to sail no more! No, never be poor any more.

And, if it seem ridiculous to grieve What do I mean? What thoughts do me misguide?

Because our friends are newly come from sea, As well upon a staff may witches ride

Though ne'er so fair and calm it be; Their fancy'd journeys in the air,

What would all sober men believe, As I sail round the ocean in this Chair!

If they should hear us sigbing say, "Tis true; but yet this Chair which here you

“ Balcarres, who but th other day

Did all our love and our respect command; see, For all its quiet now, and gravity,

At whose great parts we all amaz'd did stand; Has wander'd and has travellid more

Is from a storm, alas! cast suddenly on land ?” Than ever beast, or fish, or bird, or ever tree, be- If you will say—“Few persons upon Earth fore:

Did, more than he, deserve to have In every air and every sea 't has been,

A life exempt from fortune and the grave; 'T has compass'd all the Earth, and all the Heavens Whether you look upon his birth 't has seen.

And ancestors, whose fame's so widely spread Let not the pope's itself with this compare,

But ancestors, alas ! who long ago are dead This is the only universal Chair.

Or whether you consider more The pious wanderer's fleet, sav'd from the flame

The vast increase, as sure you ought, (Which still the relics did of Truy pursue,

Of honour by his labour bought,

And added to the former store :"
And took them for its due),
A squadron of immortal nymphs became :

All I can answer, is, " That I allow
Still with their arms they row about the seas,

The privilege you plead for; and arow And still make new and greater voyages:

That, as he well deserv'd, be doth enjoy it now." Nor has the first poetic ship of Greece

Though God, for great and righteous ends,

Which his unerring Providence intends And guide her sailing successors below,

Erroneous mankind should not understand, Bright as her ancient freight the shining fleece) Would not permit Balcarres' hand, Yet to this day a quiet harbour found;

(That once with so much industry and art, The tide of heaven still carries her around;

Had chos'd the gaping wounds of every part) Only Drake's sacred vessel (which before

To perfect his distracted nation's cure, Had done and had seen more

Or stop the fatal bondage 'twas t endure ;

« AnteriorContinuar »