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IMPERFECT,

SLEEP, sleep, old Sun, thou canst not have re-past
As yet the wound, thou took'st on Friday last;
Sleep then, and rest: the world may bear thy stay,
A better Sun rose before thee to day;
Who, not content t' enlighten all that dwell
On the Earth's face, as thou enlightned Hell;
And made the dark fires languish in that vale,
As at thy presence here our fires grow pale:
Whose body having walk'd on Earth, and now
Hast'ning to Heav'n, would that he might allow
Himself unto all stations, and fill all,
For these three days become a mineral.
He was all gold, when he lay down, but rose
All tincture; and doth not alone dispose

Leaden and iron wills to good, but is
Of pow'r to make ev'n sinful flesh like his.
Had one of those, whose credulous piety
Thought, that a soul one might discern and see
Go from a body, at this sepulchre been,
And issuing from the sheet this body seen,
He would have justly thought this body a soul,
If not of any man, yet of the whole.

Desunt cætera.

AN

HYMN TO THE SAINTS,

AND TO MARQUIS HAMILTON.

TO SIR ROBERT CARR.

SIR,

I PRESUME you rather try what you can do in me, than what I can do in verse; you know my uttermost when it was best, and even then I did best, when I had least truth for my subjects. In this present case there is so much truth, as it defeats all poetry. Call therefore this paper by what name you will, and if it be not worthy of him, nor of you, nor of me, smother it, and be that the sacrifice, If you had commanded me to have waited on his body to Scotland and preached there, I would have embraced the obligation with more alacrity; but I thank you, that you would command me that, which I was loath to do, for even that hath given a tincture of merit to the obedience of

your poor friend

and servant in Christ Jesus, J. DONNE.

WHETHER that soul, which now comes up to you,
Fill any former rank, or make a new,
Whether it take a name nam'd there before,
Or be a name itself, and order more
Than was in Heav'n till now; (for may not he
Be so, if every several angel be
A kind alone) whatever order grow
Greater by him in Heav'n, we do not so,
One of your orders grows by his access;
But by his loss grow all our orders less:
The name of father, master, friend, the name
Of subject and of prince, in one is lame;
Fair mirth is damp'd, and conversation black,
The household widow'd, and the garter slack;
The chapel wants an ear, council a tongue;
Story a theme, and music lacks a song.
Bless'd order, that hath him! the loss of him
Gangren'd all orders here; all lost a limb!
Never made body such haste to confess
What a soul was; all former comeliness

Fled in a minute, when the soul was gone,
And, having lost that beauty, would have none:
So fell our monast'ries, in an instant grown,
Not to less houses, but to heaps of stone;
So sent his body, that fair form it wore,
Unto the sphere of forms, and doth (before
His soul shall fill up his sepulchral stone)
Anticipate a resurrection;

For as it is his fame, now his soul's here,
So in the form thereof his body's there.
And if, fair soul, not with first innocents
Thy station be, but with the penitents;
(And who shall dare to ask then, when I am
Dy'd scarlet in the blood of that pure Lamb,
Whether that colour, which is scarlet then,
Were black or white before in eyes of men?)
When thou remembrest what sins thou didst find
Amongst those many friends now left behind,
And seest such sinners, as they are, with thee
Got thither by repentance, let it be
Thy wish to wish all there, to wish them clean;
Wish him a David, her a Magdalen.

THE

So though the least of his pains, deeds, or words,
Would busy a life, she all this day affords.
'This treasure then in gross, my soul, up-lay,
And in my life retail it every day.

ANNUNCIATION AND PASSION.
TAMELY, frail flesh, abstain to day; to day
My soul eats twice, Christ hither and away;
She sees him man, so like God made in this,
That of them both a circle emblem is,
Whose first and last concur; this doubtful day
Of feast or fast Christ came, and went away.
She sees him nothing twice at once, who 's all;
She sees a cedar plant itself, and fall:
Her maker put to making, and the head
Of life, at once, not yet alive, and dead;
She sees at once the virgin mother stay
Reclus'd at home, public at Golgotha.
Sad and rejoic'd she 's seen at once, and seen
At almost fifty and at scarce fifteen :
At once a son is promis'd her, and gone;
Gabriel gives Christ to her, he her to John:
Not fully a mother, she 's in orbity,
At once receiver and the legacy.

GOOD FRIDAY

All this, and all between, this day hath shown,
Th' abridgment of Christ's story, which makes one
(As in plain maps the furthest west is east)
Of th' angel's ave and consummatum est.
How well the church, God's court of faculties,
Deals in sometimes and seldom joining these!
As by the self-fix'd pole we never do

Direct our course, but the next star thereto,
Which shows where th' other is, and which we say
(Because it strays not far) doth never stray:
So God by his church, nearest to him, we know
And stand firm, if we by her motion go;
His spirit as his fiery pillar doth

Lead, and his church as cloud; to one end both.
This church, by letting those feasts join, hath shown
Death and conception in mankind are one;
Or 't was in him the same humility,
That he would be a man, and leave to be
Or as creation he hath made, as God,
With the last judgment but one period;
His imitating spouse would join in one
Manhood's extremes: he shall come, he is gone.
Or as though one blood drop, which thence did fall,
Accepted, would have serv'd, he yet shed all;

1613.

RIDING WESTWARD.

LET man's soul be a sphere, and then in this
Th' intelligence, that moves, devotion is;
And as the other spheres, by being grown
Subject to foreign motion, lose their own:
And being by others hurried every day,
Scarce in a year their natural form obey:
Pleasure or business so our souls admit

For their first mover, and are whirl'd by it.
Hence is 't, that I am carried t'wards the west
This day, when my soul's form bends to the east ;
There I should see a Sun by rising set,

And by that setting endless day beget.
But that Christ on his cross did rise and fall,
Sin had eternally benighted all.
Yet dare I almost be glad, I do not see
That spectacle of too much weight for me.
Who sees God's face, that is self-life, must die;
What a death were it then to see God die?
It made his own lieutenant, Nature, shrink;
It made his footstool crack, and the Sun wink.
Could I behold those hands, which span the poles,
And tune all spheres at once, pierc'd with those holes?
Could I behold that endless height, which is
Zenith to us and our antipodes,

Humbled below us? or that blood, which is
The seat of all our souls, if not of his,
Made dirt of dust? or that flesh, which was worn
By God for his apparel, ragg'd and torn?
If on these things I durst not look, durst I
On his distressed mother cast mine eye,
Who was God's partner here, and furnish'd thus
Half of that sacrifice, which ransom'd us?
Though these things, as I ride, be from mine eye,
They're present yet unto my memory,

For that looks towards them; and thou look'st to

wards me,

O Saviour, as thou hang'st upon the tree.
I turn my back to thee, but to receive
Corrections; till thy mercies bid thee leave.
O think me worth thine anger, punish me,
Burn off my rust, and my deformity;
Restore thine image so much by thy grace,
That thou may'st know me, and I'll turn my face.

THE LITANY.

THE FATHER.

FATHER of Heav'n, and him, by whom
It, and us for it, and all else for us

Thou mad'st and govern'st ever, come,
And re-create me, now grown ruinous :

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When senses, which thy soldiers are,
We arm against thee, and they fight for sin;
When want, sent but to tame, doth war,
And work despair a breach to enter in;

When plenty, God's image and seal,
Makes us idolatrous,

Deliver us through thy descent
Into the Virgin, whose womb was a place
Of middle kind, and thou being sent
T' ungracious us, stay'd'st at her full grace;
And through thy poor birth, where first thou
Glorified'st poverty,

And yet soon after riches didst allow,
By accepting kings' gifts in th' Epiphany,
Deliver, and make us to both ways free.

And love it, not him, whom it should reveal;
When we are mov'd to seem religious
Only to vent wit, Lord, deliver us.

gone, Good Lord, deliver us, and teach us when We may not, and we may blind unjust men.

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And through thy free confession,
Though thereby they were then

Made blind, so that thou might'st from them have

203

That we may change to evenness
This intermitting aguish piety;

That snatching cramps of wickedness,
And apoplexies of fast sin may die;
That music of thy promises,
Not threats in thunder, may
Awaken us to our just offices;
What in thy book thou dost or creatures say,
That we may hear, Lord, hear us, when we pray.

Through thy submitting all, to blows
Thy face, thy robes to spoil, thy fame to scorn;
All ways, which rage or justice knows,
And by which thou could'st show, that thou wast born;
And through thy gallant humbleness,
Which thou in death didst show,
Dying before thy soul they could express,
Deliver us from death, by dying so
To this world, ere this world dobid us go.

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Son of God, hear us; and since thou,
By taking our blood, ow'st it us again,
Gain to thyself and us allow;
And let not both us and thyself be slain.
O Lamb of God, which took'st our sin,
Which could not stick to thee,

O let it not return to us agains
But patient and physician being free,
As sin is nothing, let it no where be.

UPON THE

TRANSLATION OF THE PSALMS,

BY SIR PHILIP SYDNEY, AND THE COUNTESS OF PEMBROKÉ
HIS SISTER.

ETERNAL God, (for whom whoever dare
Seek new expressions, do the circle square,
And thrust into strait corners of poor wit
Thee, who art cornerless and infinite)
I would but bless thy name, not name thee now;
(And thy gifts are as infinite as thou:)
Fix we our praises, therefore on this one,
That as thy blessed Spirit fell upon

These psalms' first author in a cloven tongue,
(For 't was a double power by which he sung,
The highest matter in the noblest form ;)
So thou hast cleft that spirit, to perform
That work again, and shed it here upon
Two by their bloods, and by thy spirit one;
A brother and a sister, made by thee
The organ, where thou art the harmony;
Two, that make one John Baptist's holy voice;
And who that psalm, "Now let the isles rejoice,"
Have both translated, and apply'd it too;
Both told us what, and taught us how to do.
They show us islanders our joy, our king,
They tell us why, and teach us how to sing.
Make all this all, three choirs, Heav'n, Earth, and
spheres ;

The first, Heav'n, hath a song, but no man hears;
The spheres have music, but they have no tongue,
Their harmony is rather danc'd than sung;
But our third choir, to which the first gives ear,
(For angels learn by what the church does here)
This choir hath all. The organist is he,,
Who hath tun'd God and man; the organ we:
The songs are these, which Heav'n's high holy Muse
Whisper'd to David, David to the Jews,
And David's successors in holy zeal,
In forms of joy and art do re-reveal
To us so sweetly and sincerely too,
That I must not rejoice as I would do,
When I behold, that these psalms are become
So well attir'd abroad, so ill at home;
So well in chambers, in thy church so ill,
As I can scarce call that reform'd, until
This be reform'd. Would a whole state present
A lesser gift than some one man hath sent?
And shall our church unto our spouse and king
More hoarse, more harsh than any other, sing?
For that we pray, we praise thy name for this,
Which by this Moses and this Miriam is
Already done; and as those psalms we call
(Though some have other authors) David's all:
So though some have, some may some psalms trans-
We thy Sydnean psalms shall celebrate;

[late,

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THOU, whose diviner soul hath caus'd thee now
Making lay-scornings of the ministry,
To put thy hand unto the holy plow,
Not an impediment, but victory;

What bring'st thou home with thee? how is thy mind
Affected since the vintage? Dost thou find
New thoughts and stirrings in thee? and, as steel
Or as a ship, after much pain and care,
Touch'd with a load-stone, dost new motions feel?

For iron and cloth brings home rich Indian ware,
Hast thou thus traffick'd, but with far more gain
Of noble goods, and with less time and pain?
Thou art the same materials as before,
Only the stamp is changed, but no more.
And as new crowned kings alter the face,
But not the money's substance; so hath grace
Chang'd only God's old image by creation,
To Christ's new stamp, at this thy coronation;
Or as we paint angels with wings, because
They bear God's message, and proclaim his laws;
Since thou must do the like, and so must move,
Art thou new-feather'd with celestial love?
Dear, tell me where thy purchase lies, and show
What thy advantage is above, below;
But if thy gainings do surmount expression,
Whose joys pass speech? Why do they think unfit
Why doth the foolish world scorn that profession,
That gentry should join families with it?

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