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TO A. L. PERSUASIONS TO LOVE.
OW that the winter's gone, the Earth hath lost
Her snow-white robes, and now no more the
Candies the grass, or casts an icy cream [frost
Upon the silver lake, or chrystal stream:
But the warm Sun thaws the benummed Earth
And makes it tender, gives a sacred birth
To the dead swallow, wakes in hollow tree
The drowsy cuckow and the humble bee.
Now do a quire of chirping minstrels bring
In triumph to the world, the youthful Spring :
The vallies, hills, and woods, in rich array,
Welcome the coming of the long'd-for May.
Now all things smile; only my love doth low'r :
Nor hath the scalding noon-day-Sun the pow'r
To melt that marble ice, which still doth hold
Her heart congeal'd, and makes her pity cold.
The ox, which lately did for shelter fly
Into the stall, doth now securely lie
In open fields: and love no more is made
By the fire-side; but in the cooler shade
Amyntas now doth with his Chloris sleep
Under a sycamore, and all things keep
Time with the season; only she doth carry
June in her eyes, in her heart January.
THINK not, 'cause men flatt'ring say,
Y' are fresh as April, sweet as May,
Bright as is the morning-star,
That you are so; or though you are,
Be not therefore proud, and deem
All men unworthy your esteem:
For being so, you lose the pleasure
Of being fair, since that rich treasure
Of rare beauty and sweet feature Was bestow'd on you by nature To be enjoy'd, and 't were a sin There to be scarce, where she hath been So prodigal of her best graces; Thus common beauties and mean faces Shall have more pastime, and enjoy The sport you lose by being coy. Did the thing for which I sue, Only concern myself, not you; Were men so fram'd as they alone Reap'd all the pleasure, women none, Then had you reason to be scant; But 't were a madness not to grant That which affords (if you consent) To you the giver, more content Than me the beggar; oh then be Kind to yourself, if not to me; Starve not yourself, because you may Thereby make me pine away; Nor let brittle beauty make You your wiser thoughts forsake: For that lovely face will fail; Beauty's sweet, but beauty's frail; 'T is sooner past, 't is sooner done Than summer's rain, or winter's sun; Most fleeting, when it is most dear; 'T is gone, while we but say 't is here. These curious locks so aptly twin'd, Whose every hair a soul doth bind, Will change their auburn hue, and grow White, and cold as winter's snow. That eye which now is Cupid's nest Will prove his grave, and all the rest Will follow; in the cheek, chin, nose, Nor lilly shall be found, nor rose; And what will then become of all Those, whom now you servants call? Like swallows, when your summer's done They'll fly, and seek some warmer sun. Then wisely chuse one to your friend, Whose love may (when your beauties end)'
Remain still firm: be provident,
And think before the summer's spent
Of following winter; like the ant
In plenty hoard for time of scant.
Call out amongst the multitude
Of lovers, that seek to intrude
Into your favour, one that may
Love for an age, not for a day;
One that will quench your youthful fires,
And feed in age your hot desires.
For when the storms of time have mov'd
Waves on that cheek which was belov'd;
When a fair lady's face is pin'd,
And yellow spread where red once shin'd;
When beauty, youth, and all sweets leave her,
Love may return, but lovers never:
And old folks say there are no pains
Like itch of love in aged veins.
Oh love me then, and now begin it,
Let us not lose this present minute:
For time and age will work that wrack
Which time or age shall ne'er call back.
The snake each year fresh skin resumes,
And eagles change their aged plumes;
The faded rose each spring receives
A fresh red tincture on her leaves:
But if your beauties once decay,
You never know a second May.
Oh, then be wise, and whilst your season
Affords you days for sport, do reason;
Spend not in vain your life's short hour,
But crop in time your beauty's flow'r:
Which will away, and doth together
Both bud and fade, both blow and wither.
LIPS AND EYES.
IN Celia's face a question did arise,
Which were more beautiful, her Lips or Eyes:
"We," said the Eyes, "send forth those pointed darts
Which pierce the hardest adamantine hearts."
"From us," reply'd the Lips, "proceed those blisses,
Which lovers reap by kind words and sweet kisses."
Then wept the Eyes, and from their springs did pour
Of liquid oriental pearl a show'r.
Whereat the Lips, mov'd with delight and pleasure,
Through a sweet smile unlock'd their pearly treasure;
And bade Love judge, whether did add more grace,
Weeping or smiling pearls in Celia's face.
A DIVINE MISTRESS.
IN Nature's pieces still I see
Some errour that might mended be;
Something my wish could still remove,
Alter or add; but my fair love
Was fram'd by hands far more divine;
For she hath every beauteous line:
Yet I had been far happier
Had Nature, that made me, made her;
Then likeness might (that love creates)
Have made her love what now she hates:
Yet I confess I cannot spare
From her just shape the smallest hair;
A CRUEL MISTRESS.
We read of kings, and gods, that kindly took
A pitcher fill'd with water from the brook:
But I have daily tendred without thanks
Rivers of tears that overflow their banks.
A slaughter'd bull will appease angry Jove;
A horse the Sun, a lamb the god of love;
But she disdains the spotless sacrifice
Of a pure heart, that at her altar lies.
Vesta is not displeased, if her chaste urn
Do with repaired fuel ever burn;
But my saint frowns, though to her honour'd name
I consecrate a never-dying flame.
Th' Assyrian king did none i' th' furnace throw,
But those that to his image did not bow;
With bended knees I daily worship her,
Yet she consumes her own idolater.
Of such a goddess no times leave record,
That burnt the temple where she was ador'd.
I'LL gaze no more on her bewitching face,
Since ruin harbours there in every place:
For my enchanted soul alike she drowns
With calms and tempests of her smiles and frowns,
I'll love no more those cruel eyes of hers,
Which, pleas'd or anger'd, still are murderers:
For if she dart (like lightning) through the air
Her beams of wrath, she kills me with despair;
If she behold me with a pleasing eye,
I surfeit with excess of joy, and die.
COMMANDING ME TO RETURN her LetterS.
So grieves th' advent'rous merchant, when he throws
All the long-toil'd-for treasure his ship stows
Into the angry main, to save from wrack
Himself and men; as I grieve to give back
These letters: yet so powerful is your sway,
As if you bid me die, I must obey.
Go then, blest papers, you shall kiss those hands.
That gave you freedom, but hold me in bands;
Which with a touch did give you life, but I,
Because I may not touch those hands, must die.
Methinks, as if they knew they should be sent
Home to their native soil from banishment,
I see them smile, like dying saints, that know
They are to leave the Earth, and tow'rd Heav'n go.
When you return, pray tell your sovereign,
And mine, I gave you courteous entertain;
Each line receiv'd a tear, and then a kiss;
First bath'd in that, it scap'd unscorch'd from this:
I kist it, because your hand had been there;
But, 'cause it was not now, I shed a tear.
Tell her no length of time nor change of air,
No cruelty, disdain, absence, despair,
No, nor her stedfast constancy can deter
My vassal heart from ever hon'ring her.
Though these be pow'rful arguments to prove
I love in vain; yet I must ever love.
Say, if she frown when you that word rehearɛe,
Service in prose is oft call'd love in verse:
Then pray her, since I send back on my part
Her papers, she will send me back my heart.
If she refuse, warn her to come before
The god of love, whom thus I will implore:
"Trav'ling thy country's road (great god) I spy'd
By chance this lady, and walk'd by her side
From place to place, fearing no violence,
For I was well arm'd, and had made defence
In former fights, 'gainst fiercer foes than she
Did at our first encounter seem to be:
But going farther, every step reveal'd
Some hidden weapon, till that time conceal'd.
Seeing those outward arms, I did begin
To fear some greater strength was lodg'd within.
Looking unto her mind, I might survey
An host of beauties that in ambush lay;
And won the day before they fought the field:
For I, unable to resist, did yield.
But the insulting tyrant so destroys
My conquer'd mind, my ease, my peace my joys;
Breaks my sweet sleep, invades my harmless rest,
Robs me of all the treasure of my breast;
Spares not my heart, nor yet a greater wrong;
For having stol'n my heart, she binds my tongue.
But at the last her meiting eyes unseal'd
My lips, enlarg'd my tongue, then I reveal'd
To her own ears the story of my harms,
Wrought by her virtues, and her beauty's charms.
Now hear (just judge) an act of savageness:
When I complain, in hope to find redress,
She bends her angry brow, and from her eye
Shoots thousand darts. I then well hop'd to die;
Tut in such sovereign balm love dips his shot,
Bhat, though they wound a heart, they kill it not:
She saw the blood gush forth from many a wound,
Yet fled, and left me bleeding on the ground,
Nor sought my cure, nor saw me since; 't is true,
Absence and time (two cunning leeches) drew
The flesh together, yet sure though the skin
Be clos'd without, the wound festers within.
Thus hath this cruel lady us'd a true
Servant and subject to herself and you;
Nor know i (great Love) if my life be lent
To show thy mercy, or my punishment;
If this inditement fright her, so as she
Seem willing to return my heart to me,
But cannot find it, (for perhaps it may,
'Mongst other trifling hearts, be out of the way)
If she repent, and would make me amends,
Bid me but send me her's, and we are friends."
FEAR not (dear love) that I'll reveal
Those hours of pleasure we two steal;
No eye shall see, nor yet the Sun
Descry, what thou and I have done;
No ear shall hear our love, but we
Silent as the night will be;
The god of love himself (whose dart
Did first wound mine, and then thy heart)
Shall never know, that we can tell,
What sweets in stol'n embraces dwell:
This only means may find it out;
If, when I die, physicians doubt
What caus'd my death; and there to view
Of all their judgments which was true,
Rip up my heart: O then I fear
The world will see thy picture there.
Go, thou gentle whispering Wind,
Bear this sigh; and if thou find
Where my cruel fair doth rest,
Cast it in her snowy breast;
So, inflam'd by my desire,
It may set her heart a-fire:
Those sweet kisses thou shalt gain,
Will reward thee for thy pain.
Boldly light upon her lip,
There suck odours, and thence skip
To her bosom; lastly, fall
Down, and wander over all;
Range about those ivory hills
From whose every part distils
Amber dew; there spices grow,
There pure streams of nectar flow⚫
There perfume thyself, and bring
All those sweets upon thy wing;
As thou return'st, change by thy pow'r
Every weed into a flow'r;
Turn each thistle to a vine,
Make the bramble eglantine;
For so rich a booty made,
Do but this, and I am paid.
Thou canst, with thy pow'rful blast,
Heat apace, and cool as fast:
Thou canst kindle hidden flame,
And again destroy the same:
Then, for pity, either stir
Up the fire of love in her,
That alike both flames may shine,
Or else quite extinguish mine.
Now doth she with her new love play, Whilst he runs murmuring away.
Mark how she courts the banks, whilst they
As amorously their arms display,
T' embrace and clip her silver waves:
See how she strokes their sides, and craves
An entrance there, which they deny;
Whereat she frowns, threatning to fly
Home to her stream, and 'gins to swim
Backward, but from the channel's brim
Smiling returns into the creek,
With thousand dimples on her cheek.
Be thou this eddy, and I'll make
My breast thy shore, where thou shalt take
Secure repose, and never dream
Of the quite forsaken stream:
Let him to the wide ocean baste,
There lose his colour, name and taste;
Thou shalt save all, and, safe from him,
Within these arms for ever swim.
CONQUEST BY FLIGHT.
LADIES, fly from love's smooth tale, Oaths steep'd in tears do oft prevail; Grief is infections, and the air Inflam'd with sighs will blast the fair: Then stop your ears when lovers cry, Lest yourself weep, when no soft eye Shall with a sorrowing tear repay That pity which you cast away.
Young men, fly, when beauty darts
Amorous glances at your hearts:
The fixt mark gives the shooter aim,
And ladies' looks have power to maim;
Now 'twixt their lips, now in their eyes,
Wrapt in a smile, or kiss, love lies;
Then fly betimes, for only they
Conquer love that run away.
TO MY INCONSTANT MISTRESS.
WHEN thou, poor excommunicate
From all the joys of love, shalt see The full reward, and glorious fate, Which my strong faith shall purchase me, Then curse thine own inconstancy.
A fairer hand than thine shall cure
That heart which thy false oaths did wound, And to my soul, a soul more pure
Than thine shall by love's hand be bound, And both with equal glory crown'd.
Then shalt thou weep, entreat, complain
To love, as I did once to thee; When all thy tears shall be as vain
As mine were then, for thou shalt be Damn'd for thy false apostacy.
That killing power is none of thine,
I gave it to thy voice and eyes: Thy sweets, thy graces, all are mine;
Thou art my star, shin'st in my skies; Then dart not from thy borrowed sphere Lightning on him that fix'd thee there.
If the quick spirits in your eye
Now languish, and anon must die;
If ev'ry sweet, and ev'ry grace
Must fly from that forsaken face:
Then, Celia, let us reap our joys,
Ere time such goodly fruit destroys.