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XXX

Say, ye bright brothers,

The fugitive sons of those fair eyes, !
Your fruitful mothers,

What make you here? what hopes can 'tice 1
You to be born? what cause can borrow
You from those nests of noble sorrow?

XXXI

Whither away so fast?

For sure the sluttish earth

Your sweetness cannot taste,
Nor does the dust deserve

your

Sweet, whither haste you then?
Why you trip so fast away?

XXXII

We go not to seek

The darlings of Aurora's bed,
The rose's modest cheek,

birth. O say

2

Nor the violet's humble head.
Though the field's eyes too Weepers be,
Because they want such tears as we.

XXXIII

Much less mean we to trace
The fortune of inferior gems,
Preferr'd to some proud face,
Or perched upon fear'd diadems:
Crown'd heads are toys. We go to meet
A worthy object, our Lord's feet.

1 Entice.

2 Flowers.

SANCTA MARIA DOLORUM, OR, THE MOTHER OF SORROWS

A PATHETICAL DESCANT UPON THE DEVOUT PLAINSONG OF STABAT MATER DOLOROSA

I

IN

N shade of Death's sad tree
Stood doleful she.

Ah she, now by none other

Name to be known, alas, but Sorrow's Mother. Before her

eyes
Hers and the whole World's Joy,
Hanging all torn, she sees; and in His woes
And pains, her pangs and throes:

Each wound of His, from every part,
All more at home in her one heart.

II

What kind of marble then
Is that cold man

Who can look on and see,

Nor keep such noble sorrows company?
Sure even from you

(My flints) 2 some drops are due,

To see so many unkind swords contest
So fast for one soft breast:
While with a faithful, mutual flood,
Her bleed tears, His wounds weep blood.

eyes

1 The Cross.

2 His own eyes, which should be weeping.

III

O costly intercourse
Of deaths, and worse-

Divided loves. While Son and mother Discourse alternate wounds to one another, Quick deaths that grow

And gather, as they come and go.

His nails write swords in her, which soon her heart
Pays back, with more than their own smart;
Her swords, still growing with His pain,
Turn
spears, and straight come home again.

IV

She sees her Son, her God,
Bow with a load

Of borrow'd sins; and swim

In woes that were not made for Him.

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Charged to look on, and with a steadfast eye
See her life 1 die ;

Leaving her only so much breath
As serves to keep alive her death.

V

O mother turtle-dove!

Soft source of love!

That these dry lids might borrow

Something from thy full seas of sorrow!
O in that breast

Of thine (the noblest nest

1 Him that was the life of Her.

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Both of Love's fires and floods) might I recline
This hard, cold heart of mine!
The chill lump would relent, and prove
Soft subject for the siege of Love.

VI

t

O teach those wounds to bleed
In me; me, so to read

This book of loves, thus writ
In lines of death, my life may copy
With loyal cares.

it

O let me, here, claim shares,
Yield something in thy sad prerogative
(Great Queen of griefs!), and give
Me too, my tears; who, though all stone,
Think much that thou shouldst mourn alone.

VII

Yea, let
my life and me
Fix here with thee,

And at the humble foot

Of this fair tree,1 take our eternal root.

That so we may

At least be in Love's way;

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And in these chaste wars, while the wing'd wounds

flee

So fast 'twixt Him and Thee,

My breast may catch the kiss of some kind dart,
Though as at second hand, from either heart.
1 The Cross.

VIII

O you, your own best darts,
Dear, doleful hearts;

Hail! and strike home, and make me see
That wounded bosoms their own weapons
be.
Come wounds, come darts!

Nail'd hands and pierced hearts!

Come your whole selves, Sorrow's great Son and Mother!

Nor grudge a younger brother

Of griefs his portion, who (had all their due)
One single wound should not have left for you.

IX !

Shall I set there in sins
So deep a share,

(Dear wounds!), and only now In sorrows draw no dividend with you? O be more wise,

If not more soft, mine eyes!

Flow, tardy founts! and into decent showers
Dissolve my days and hours.

And if thou yet (faint soul!) defer

To bleed with Him, fail not to weep with her.

X

1

Rich queen, lend some relief;,

At least an alms of grief,

To a heart who by sad right of sin

Could prove the whole sum (too sure) due to him.

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