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Nor do I beg this slender inch, to wile
The time away, or falsely to beguile
My thoughts with joy; here's nothing worth a smile.
Quarles' Emblems, B. III. Emb. xii.
O THAT THOU WOULDST HIDE ME IN THE GRAVE,
THAT THOU WOULDST KEEP ME IN SECRET UNTIL THY WRATH BE PAST.
And whither shall I fly? what path untrod
Shall I seek out to 'scape the flaming rod
Of my offended, of my angry God?
Where shall I sojourn? what kind sea will hide
My head from thunder? where shall I abide,
Until his flames be quench'd or laid aside ?
What if my feet should take their hasty flight,
And seek protection in the shades of night?
Alas! no shades can blind the God of light.
What if my soul should take the wings of day,
And find some desert; if she spring away,
The wings of Vengeance clip as fast as they.
What if some solid rock should entertain
My frighted soul? can solid rocks restrain
The stroke of Justice and not cleave in twain?
Nor sea, vor shade, nor shield, nor rock, nor cave,
Nor silent deserts, nor the sullen grave,
Where flame-ey'd Fury * means to smite, can save.
Tis vain to flee; 'till gentle Mercy show
the further off we go, The swing of Justice deals the mightier blow.
Th’ ingenuous child, corrected, doth not fly
His angry mother's hand, but clings more nigh,
And quenches with his tears her flaming eye.
Great God! there is no safety here below;
Thou art my fortress, thou that seem'st my
'Tis thou, that strik’st the stroke, must guard the blow t.
Although the purple morning, brags in brightness of the
As though he had of chased night, a glorious conquest won:
The time by day, gives place again to force of drowsy night,
And every creature is constrain'd to change his lusty plight.
flame-ey'd Fury.] An epithet highly original and fine. Shakspeare uses fire-ey'd Fury in his Romeo and Juliet.
+ For further observations, see Jackson's Letters, Vol. II. Let. XXX. where both these particular pieces of Quarles were first more immedkately brought forward to the public eye.
Of pleasure all that here we taste;
We feel the contrary at last.
In spring, though pleasant Zephyrus hath fruitful earth in
spired, And nature hath each bush, each branch, with blossoms
brave attired :
Yet fruits and flowers, as buds and blooms, full quickly
When stormy winter comes to kill, the summer's jollity.
By time are got, by time are lost,
All things wherein we pleasure most.
Although the seas so calmly glide, as dangers none appear,
And doubt of storms, in sky is none, king Phæbus shines so
Yet when the boist'rous winds break out, and raging waves
The seely bark now heaves to heaven, now sinks again to hell,
Thus change in ev'ry thing we see,
And nothing constant seems to be.
Who floweth most in worldly wealth, of wealth is most unsure,
And he that chiefly tastes of joy, doth sometime woe endure:
Who vaunteth most of numb'red friends, forego them all he
must, '. The fairest flesh and liveliest blood, is turn’d at length to dust.
Experience gives a certain ground,
That certain here, is nothing found.
Then trust to that which aye remains, the bliss of heavens
above, Which Time, nor Fate, nor Wind, nor Storm, is able to re
Trust to that sure celestial rock, that rests in glorious throne,
That hath been, is, and must be still, our anchor hold alone.
The world is but a vanity,
In heaven seek we our surety.
The Paradise of Dainty Devises,
Fol. 18, 44, signed F. K*.
While that my soul repairs to her devotion,
Here I entomb my flesh, that it betimes
May take acquaintance of this heap of dust;
To which the blast of Death's incessant motion,
Fed with the exhalation of our crimes,
Drives all at last; therefore I gladly trust
My body to the school, that it may learn
To spell his elements, and finds his birth
Written in dusty heraldry and lines.
Which dissolution sure doth best discern,
Comparing dust with dust, and earth with earth.
These laugh at jeat, and marble put for signs,
To sever the good fellowship of dust,
And spoil the meeting. What shall point out them,
* Probably written by Francis Kinwelmershe, a contributor to the collection in which they appear, and a student of Gray's Inn. He assisted Gascoigne in his tragedy of Jocasta.
When they shall bow, and kneel, and fall down flat
To kiss those heaps, which now they have in trust ?
Dear flesh, while I do pray, learn here thy stem
And true descent: that when thou shalt grow fat;
And wanton in thy cravings, thou may’st know
That flesh is but the glass which holds the dust
That measures all our time; which also shall
Be crumbled into dust, mark here below
How tame these ashes are, how free from lust,
That thou may'st fit thyself against thy fall.
The Temple, by G. Herbert;
p. 56, Edit. 1709.
AND now, ye British swains (whose harmless sheep
Than all the world's beside I joy to keep),
Which spread on every plain and hilly wold,
Fleeces no less esteem'd than that of gold,
For whose exchange one India gems of price,
The other gives you of her choicest spice;
And well she may: but we unwise, the while,
Lessen the glory of our fruitful isle ;
Making those nations think we foolish are,
For baser drugs to vent our richer ware,
Which (save the bringer) never profit man;
Except the sexton and physician.