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"All selfe-accusing soules no rest can finde, What greater torment then a troubled minde ?"
Let us adore th' immortall powers,
On whose decree, of all that ends,
The state depends,
That (farre from barbarous broiles)
We of our life this little space
May spend in peace,
Free from affliction's showres;
Or at the least from guilty toyles;
"Let us of rest the treasure strive to gaine, Without the which nought can be had but paine."
"THIS life of ours is like a rose,
Which whilst rare beauties it array,
Doth then enjoy the least repose;
When virgin-like made blush (we see)
Of every hand it is the prey,
And by each winde is blowne away;
Yea, though from violence scap'd free,
(Thus time triumphs, and leades all thrals)
Yet doth it languish and decay:
O! whilst the courage hottest boiles,
And that our life seemes best to be,
It is with dangers compast still;
Whilst it each little change appalles,
The body, force without oft foiles,
It th' owne distemp'rature oft spoiles,
And even, though none it chance to kill,
As nature failes, the body falles,
Of which save death, nought bounds the toyles:
What is this moving tow'r in which we trust?
A little winde clos'd in a cloud of dust."
And yet some sprites though being pent
In this fraile prison's narrow bounds,
(Whilst what might serve, doth not content)
Doe alwaies bend their thoughts too high,
And ayme at all the peopled grounds;
Then whilst their brests ambition wounds,
They feed as fearing straight to dye,
Yet build as if they still might live,
Whilst famish'd for fame's empty sounds:
Of such no end the travell ends,
But a beginning gives, whereby
They may be vex'd worse then before;
For, whilst they still new hopes contrive,
"The hoped good more anguish sends,
Then the possess'd contentment lends;"
As beasts not taste, but doe devoure,
They swallow much, and for more strive,
Whilst still their hope some change attends:
"And how can such but still themselves annoy,
Who can acquire, but know not how t' enjoy ?"
Since as a ship amidst the deepes,
Or as an eagle through the ayre,
Of which no way th' impression keepes,
Most swift when seeming least to move:
This breath of which we take such care,
Doth tosse the body every where, '
That it may hence with haste remove :
"Life slips and sleepes alwayes away,
Then hence, and as it came, goes bare,"
Whose steppes behinde no trace doe leave:
Why should Heaven-banish'd soules thus love
The cause, and bounds of their exile,
Whilst oft environ'd with his foes,
Which threatned death on every side,
Great Cæsar parted from repose
(As Atlas holding up the starres)
Did of a world the weight abide;
But since a prey to foolish pride,
More then by all the former warres,
He now by it doth harm'd remaine,
And of his fortune doth diffide:
Made rich by many nations' wreake,
He (breaking through the liquid barres)
In Neptune's armes his minion forc'd ;
Yet still pursu'd new hopes in vaine:
"Would the ambitious looking backe
Of their inferiours knowledge take,
They from huge cares might be divore'd,
Whilst viewing few, more pow'r attaine,
And many more then they to lacke:
The onely plague from men that rest doth reave,
Is that they weigh their wants, not what they have."
Since thus the great themselves involve
In such a labyrinth of cares,
Whence none to scape can well resolve,
But by degrees are forward led,
Through waves of hopes, rockes of despaires:
Let us avoyd ambition's snares,
And farre from stormes by envy bred,
Still seeke (though low) a quiet rest,
With mindes where no proud thought repaires,
That in vaine shadowes doth delight;
Thus may our fancies still be fed
With that which Nature freely gives;
Let us iniquity detest,
And hold but what we owe of right;
Th' eye's treasure is th' all-circling light,
Not that vaine pompe for which pride strives,
Whose glory (but a poysnous pest)
To plague the soule, delights the sight:
"Ease comes with ease, where all by paine buy
paine, Rest we in peace, by warre let others raigne."
Yet should we not mispending houres,
A freedome seeke, as oft it falls,
With an intent
But to content
These vaine delights, and appetites of ours;
For, then but made farre greater thralls,
We might repent
As not still pent
In stricter bounds by others' pow'rs,
Whil'st feare licentious thoughts appalls!
"Of all the tyrants that the world affords,
One's owne affections are the fiercest lords."
As libertines those onely live,
Who (from the bands of vice set free)
Vile thoughts cancell,
And would excell
In all that doth true glory give, From which when as no tyrants be Them to repell,
And to compell
Their deeds against their thoughts to strive, They blest are in a high degree:
For, such of fame the scrouls can hardly fill,
Whose wit is bounded by another's will.”
Who may effect
What we affect,
And Tarquine's steps make Cæsar trace; Though seeming dangers to despise
He doth suspect
What we expect
Which from his breast hath banish'd peace,
Though fairely he his feares disguise:
"Of tyrants even the wrong, revenge affords,
All feare but theirs, and they feare all men's swords."
WHAT fury thus doth fill the brest
With a prodigious rash desire,
Which banishing their soules from rest,
Doth make them live who high aspire,
(Whilst it within their bosome boyles)
As salamanders in the fire;
Or like to serpents changing spoyles,
Their wither'd beauties to renew?
Like vipers with unnaturall toyles,
Of such the thoughts themselves pursue,
Who for all lines their lives doe square,
Whilst like camelions changing hue,
They onely feed on empty ayre:
"To passe ambition greatest matters brings,
And (save contentment) can attaine all things."
This active passion doth disdaine
To match with any vulgar minde,
As in base breasts where terrours raigne,
Too great a guest to be confin'd;
It doth but lofty thoughts frequent,
Where it a spatious field may finde,
It selfe with honour to content,
Where reverenc'd fame doth lowdest sound;
Those for great things by courage bent,
(Farre lifted from this lumpish round)
Would in the sphere of glory move,
Whilst lofty thoughts which nought can binde,
All rivals live in vertue's love;
"On abject preyes as th' eagles never light,
Ambition poysons but the greatest sprite."
And of this restlesse vulture's brood,
(If not become too great a flame)
A little sparke doth sometime good,
Which makes great mindes (affecting fame)
To suffer still all kinde of paine:
Their fortune at the bloudy game,
Who hazard would for hope of gaine,
Vnlesse first burn'd by thirst of praise?
The learned to a higher straine,
Their wits by emulation raise,
As those who hold applauses deare;
And what great minde at which men gaze,
It selfe can of ambition cleare,
Which is when valu'd at the highest price,
A generous errour, an heroicke vice?
"Are not those wretch'd, who, ore a dangerous snare
Do hang by hopes, whilst ballanc'd in the ayre;"
Then when they have the port attain'd,
Which was through seas of dangers sought,
They (loe) at last but losse have gain'd,
And by great trouble, trouble bought:
Their mindes are married still with feares,
To bring forth many a jealous thought;
With searching eyes, and watching eares,
To learne that which it grieves to know:
The brest that such a burden beares,
What huge afflictions doe orethrow?
Thus, each prince is (as all perceive)
No more exalted then brought low,
"Of many, lord, of many, slave;
That idoll greatnesse which th' Earth doth adore,
Is gotten with great paine, and kept with more;"
But when this frenzie, flaming bright,
Doth so the soules of some surprise,
That they can taste of no delight,
But what from soveraignty doth rise,
Then, huge affliction it affords;
Such must (themselves so to disguise)
Prove prodigall of courteous words,
Give much to some, and promise all,
Then humble seeme to be made lords,
Yea, being thus to many thrall,
Must words impart, if not support;
To those who crush'd by fortune fall;
And grieve themselves to please each sort:
He who to this imagin'd good,
Did through his countrie's bowels tend,
Neglecting friendship, duty, bloud,
And all on which trust can depend,
Or by which love could be conceiv'd,
Doth finde of what he did attend,
His expectations farre deceiv'd;
For, since suspecting secret snares,
His soule hath still of rest beene reav'd,
Whilst squadrons of tumultuous cares,
Forth from his brest extort deep grones:
Thus Cæsar now of life despaires,
Whose lot his hope exceeded once;
And who can long well keep an ill wonne state?
"Those perish must by some whom all men hate."
WHAT fools are those who do repose their trust
On what this masse of misery affords ?
And (bragging but of th' excrements of dust)
Of life-lesse treasures labour to be lords:
Which like the Sirens' songs, or Circe's charmes,
With shadows of delights hide certaine harmes
Ah! whilst they sport on pleasure's ycie grounds,
Oft poyson'd by prosperitie with pride,
A sudden storme their floting joyes confounds,
Whose course is ordred by the eye-lesse guide, Who so inconstantly her selfe doth beare Th' unhappie men may hope, the happy feare, The fortunate who bathe in flouds of joyes,
To perish oft amidst their pleasures chance, And mirthlesse wretches wallowing in annoyes,
Oft by adversitie themselves advance; Whil'st Fortune bent to mock vaine worldlings cares, Doth change despaires in hopes, hopes in despaires. That gallant Grecian whose great wit so soone,
Whom others could not number, did ore-come, Had he not beene undone, had beene undone,
And if not banish'd, had not had a home; To him feare courage gave (what wondrous change!) And many doubts a resolution strange.
He who told one who then was Fortune's childe, As if with horrour to congeale bis bloud: That Caius Marius farre from Rome exil'd,
Wretch'd on the ruines of great Carthage stood; Though long both plagu'd by griefe, and by disgrace, The consul-ship regain'd, and dy'd in peace.
WRITTEN TO HIS MAJESTIE BY THE AUTHOUR AT THE TIME
OF HIS MAIESTIES FIRST ENTRIE INTO ENGLAND.
Then let us live, since all things change below, When rais'd most high, as those who once may fall,
And hold when by disasters brought more low,
The minde still free, what ever else be thrall: "Those (lords of fortune) sweeten every state, Who can command themselves, though not their
STAY, tragick Muse, with those vntimely verses,
With raging accents and with dreadfull sounds, To draw dead monarkes out of ruin'd berses, T'affright th' applauding world with bloudie wounds:
What revolutions huge have hapned thus,
By secret fates all violently led, Though seeming but by accident to us,
As due to him hath swallow'd all your praises. Whose cleere excellencies long knowne for such,
Yet in the depths of heavenly breasts first bred, All men must praise, and none can praise too much. As arguments demonstrative to prove That weaknesse dwels below, and pow'r above.
Raze all the monuments of horrours past,
T' aduance the publike mirth our treasures wast.
But this age great with glorie hath brought forth
A matchlesse monarke whom peace highlie raises, Who as th' vntainted ocean of all worth
For that which others hardly could acquire,
With losse of thousands liues and endlesse paine,
Is heapt on him euen by their owne desire,
And neuer conquerour gain'd so great a thing,
That thrist t'enioy the fruites of his blest raigne:
As those wise subiects gaining such a king.
But what a mightie state is this I see?
A little world that all true worth inherites, Strong without art, entrench'd within the sea,
Abounding in braue men full of great spirits: It seemes this ile would boast, and so she may, To be the soueraigne of the world some day.
O generous Iames, the glorie of their parts,
In large dominions equall with the best:
But the most mightie monarke of men's harts,
That euer yet a diadem possest:
Long maist thou liue, well lou'd and free from dangers,
The comfort of thine owne, the terrour of strangers.
WRITTEN SHORTLY THEREAFTER BY REASON OF AN INUN-
DATION OF DOUEN, A WATER NEERE VNTO THE AUTHOR'S
HOUSE, WHEREVPON HIS MAIESTIE WAS SOMETIMES WONT
WHAT wonder though my melancholious Muse,
Her bold attempts to prosecute refuse, [troules:
Whose generous course some lucklesse starrecon-
And would faine burie my abortiue scroules.
[fires: | And since our sunne shines in another part,
Liue like th' antipodes depriu'd of light:
Whilst those to whom his beames he doth impart,
Begin their day whilst we begin our night.
To what perfection can my lines be rais'd,
Whilst many a crosse would quench my kindling
Lo for Parnassus by the poets prais'd,
Some sauage mountaines shadow my retires.