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Yet this inconstancy is such

As thou, too, shalt adore;

I could not love thee, dear, so much Loved I not honour more.

TO AMARANTHA

That she would dishevel her hair

AMARANTHA, sweet and fair,

Ah, braid no more that shining hair!
As my curious hand or eye
Hovering round thee, let it fly.

Let it fly as unconfined

As its calm ravisher the wind,
Who hath left his darling, th' east,

To wanton in that spicy nest.

Every tress must be confessed;
But neatly tangled at the best;
Like a clew of golden thread
Most excellently ravelled.

Do not, then, wind up that light
In ribands, and o'er cloud in night,
Like the sun in 's early ray;

But shake your head and scatter day.

LUCASTA

Paying her Obsequies to the chaste memory of my dearest Cousin, Mrs. Bowes Barne

SEE what an undisturbed tear

She weeps for her last sleep!

But viewing her, straight waked, a star,
She weeps that she did weep.

Grief ne'er before did tyrannize
On the honour of that brow,
And at the wheels of her brave eyes
Was captive led, till now.

Thus for a saint's apostasy,
The unimagined woes

And sorrows of the hierarchy
None but an angel knows.

Thus for lost soul's recovery,
The clapping of the wings

And triumph of this victory
None but an angel sings.

So none but she knows to bemoan
This equal virgin's fate;
None but Lucasta can her crown
Of glory celebrate.

Then dart on me, Chaste Light, one ray,
By which I may descry

Thy joy clear through this cloudy day
To dress my sorrow by.

TO ALTHEA, FROM PRISON

WHEN love with unconfined wings
Hovers within my gates,
And my divine Althea brings

To whisper at the grates;
When I lie tangled in her hair
And fettered to her eye;

The birds that wanton in the air
Know no such liberty.

When flowing cups run swiftly round
With no allaying Thames,

Our careless heads with roses crowned,
Our hearts with loyal flames;
When thirsty grief in wine we steep,

When healths and draughts go free, Fishes that tipple in the deep

Know no such liberty.

When (like committed linnets) I
With shriller throat shall sing
The sweetness, mercy, majesty
And glories of my King;

When I shall voice aloud how good
He is, how great should be,
Enlarged winds that curl the flood

Know no such liberty.

Stone walls do not a prison make

Nor iron bars a cage;

Minds innocent and quiet take

That for an hermitage;

If I have freedom in my love,
And in my soul am free,
Angels alone that soar above
Enjoy such liberty.

A GUILTLESS LADY IMPRISONED: AFTER PENANCED

HARK, fair one, how whate'er here is
Doth laugh and sing at thy distress,
Not out of hate to thy relief,

But joy to enjoy thee, though in grief.

See! that which chains you, you chain here,

The prison is thy prisoner;

How much thy jailor's keeper art!

He binds thy hands, but thou his heart.

The gyves to rase so smooth a skin
Are so unto themselves within;
But, blest to kiss so fair an arm,
Haste to be happy with that harm;

And play about thy wanton wrist,
As if in them thou so wert dressed;
But if too rough, too hard they press,
O they but closely, closely kiss.

And as thy bare feet bless the way,
The people do not mock, but pray,
And call thee, as amazed they run,
Instead of prostitute, a nun.

The merry torch burns with desire
To kindle the eternal fire,1

And lightly dances in thine eyes
To tunes of epithalamies.

The sheet tied ever to thy waist,
How thankful to be so embraced!
And see! thy very, very bands
Are bound to thee to bind such hands.

THE ROSE

SWEET, serene, sky-like flower,

Haste to adorn the bower;

From thy long cloudy bed,
Shoot forth thy damask head.

New-startled blush of Flora,
The grief of pale Aurora
(Who will contest no more),
Haste, haste to strew her floor!

Vermilion ball that's given

From lip to lip in Heaven;

Love's couch's coverled,

Haste, haste to make her bed.

Dear offspring of pleased Venus

And jolly, plump Silenus,

Haste, haste to deck the hair

Of the only sweetly fair!

1 Evidently of love.

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