Page images
PDF
EPUB
[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

H whither, wilt thou now carrie mee? What won Llosse Fury dost thou now inspire Into my feeble breast, too full of thee? Whylest seeking to aslake thy raging fyre, Thou in me kindlest much more great desyre, And vp aloft aboue my strength doest rayse The wondrous matter of my fyre to prayse.

That as I earst in praise of thine owne name,
So now in honour of thy Mother deare, 9
An honourable Hymne I eke should frame;
And with the brightnesse of her beautie cleare,
The rauisht harts of gazefull men might reare,
To admiration of that heauenly light,
From whence proceeds such soule enchaunting
might.

partakes,

or more or lessy earthly thing parta,
Thereof as euery
So it more faire accordingly it makes,
And the grosse matter of this earthly myne,
Which clotheth it, thereafter doth refyne,
Doing away the drosse which dims the light
Of that faire beame, which therein is empight.
For through infusion of celestiall powre, 50
The duller earth it quickneth with delight,
And life-full spirits priuily doth powre
Through all the parts, that to the lookers sight
They seeme to please. That is thy soueraine
might,

Cyprian Queene, which flowing from the beame Of thy bright starre, thou into them doest

streame.

Therto do thou great Goddesse, queene of That is the thing which giueth pleasant grace Beauty,

Mother of loue, and of all worlds delight, Without whose souerayne grace and kindly dewty,

Nothing on earth seemes fayre to fleshly sight, Doe thou vouchsafe with thy loue-kindling light,

T'illuminate my dim and dulled eyne,

20

And beautifie this sacred hymne of thyne.
That both to thee, to whom I meane it most,
And eke to her, whose faire immortall beame,
Hath darted fyre into my feeble ghost,
That now it wasted is with woes extreame,
It may so please that she at length will streame
Some deaw of grace, into my withered hart,
After long sorrow and consuming smart.

Hat time this worlds great workmaister
did cast

WH

To make al things, such as we now behold, 30
It seemes that he before his eyes had plast
A goodly Paterne, to whose perfect mould
He fashiond them as comely as he could;
That now so faire and seemely they appeare,
As nought may be amended any wheare.
That wondrous Paterne wheresoere it bee,
Whether in earth layd vp in secret store,
Or else in heauen, that no man may it see
With sinfullJeyes, for feare it to deflore,
Is perfect Beautie which all men adore,
Whose face and feature doth so much excell
All mortal sence, that none the same may tell.
in all men

sinfal

40

To all things faire, that kindleth liuely fyre, Light of thy lampe, which shyning in the face, Thence to the soule darts amorous desyre, 60 And robs the harts of those which it admyre, Therewith thou pointest thy Sons poysned

[blocks in formation]

But ah, beleeue me, there is more then so
That workes such wonders in the minds of men.
I that have often prou'd, too well it know;
And who so list the like assayes to ken,
Shall find by tryall, and confesse it then,
That Beautie is not, as fond men misdeeme,
An outward shew of things, that onely seeme.
For that same goodly hew of white and red,
With which the cheekes are sprinckled, shal
decay,

89

And those sweete rosy leaues so fairely spred
Vpon the lips, shall fade and fall away
To that they were, euen to corrupted clay.
That golden wyre, those sparckling stars so
bright

Shall turne to dust, and loose their goodly light.
But that faire lampe, from whose celestiall ray
That light proceedes, which kindleth louers fire,
Shall neuer be extinguisht nor decay,
But when the vitall spirits doe expyre,
Vnto her natiue planet shall retyre,
For it is heauenly borne and can not die,
Being a parcell of the purest skie.

ΙΟΙ

For when the soule, the which deriued was
At first, out of that great immortall Spright,
By whom all liue to loue, whilome did pas
Downe from the top of purest heauens hight,
To be embodied here, it then tooke light 110
And liuely spirits from that fayrest starre,
Which lights the world forth from his firie carre.
Which powre retayning still or more or lesse,
When she in fleshly seede is eft enraced,
Through euery part she doth the same im-

presse,

According as the heauens haue her graced, And frames her house, in which she will be placed,

Fit for her selfe, adorning it with spoyle
Of th❜heauenly riches, which she robd erewhyle.
Therof it comes, that these faire soules, which
haue
120
The most resemblance of that heauenly light,'
Frame to themselues most beautifull and braue
Their fleshly bowre, most fit for their delight,
And the grosse matter by a soueraine might
Tempers so trim, that it'
well be seene,
may
A pallace fit for such a virgin Queene.

So euery spirit, as it is most pure,
And hath in it the more of heauenly light,
So it the fairer bodie doth procure
To habit in, and it more fairely dight
With chearefull grace and amiable sight.
For of the soule the bodie forme doth take:
For soule is forme, and doth the bodie make.

130

140

157-

Castig

Therefore where euer that thou doest behold
A comely corpse, with beautie faire endewed,
Know this for certaine, that the same doth hold
A beauteous soule, with faire conditions thewed,
Fit to receiue the seede of vertue strewed.
For all that faire is, is by nature good;
That is a signe to know the gentle blood.
Yet oft it falles, that many a gentle mynd
Dwels in deformed tabernacle drownd,
Either by chaunce, against the course of kynd,
Or through vnaptneffe in the substance fownd,
Which it assumed of some stubborne grownd,
That will not yield vnto her formes direction,
But is perform'd with some foule imperfection.
And oft it falles (ay me the more to rew)
Is foule abusd, and that celestiall hew,
That goodly beautie, albe heauenly borne,
Which doth the world with her delight adorne,
Made but the bait of sinne, and sinners scorne;
Whilest euery one doth seeke and sew to haue it,
But euery one doth seeke, but to depraue it.
Yet nathemore is that faire beauties blame,
But theirs that do abuse it vnto ill:
Nothing so good, but that through guilty shame
May be corrupt, and wrested vnto will.
Nathelesse the soule is faire and beauteous still,
For things immortall no corruption take.
How ever fleshes fault it filthy make:
But ye faire Dames, the worlds deare orna-
ments,

150

160

And liuely images of heauens light,
Let not your beames with such disparagements
Be dimd, and your bright glorie darkned quight:
But mindfull still of your first countries sight,
Doe still preserue your first informed grace,
Whose shadow yet shynes in your beauteous
face.

Loath that foule blot, that hellish fierbrand,
Disloiall lust, faire beauties foulest blame, 170
That base affections, which your eares would
bland,

Commend to you by loues abused name;
But is indeede the bondslaue of defame,
Which will the garland of your glorie marre,
And quench the light of your bright shyning

starre.

But gentle Loue, that loiall is and trew,
Will more illumine your resplendent ray,
And adde more brightnesse to your goodly hew,
From light of his pure fire, which by like way
Kindled of yours, your likenesse doth display,
Like as two mirrours by opposd reflexion, 181
Doe both expresse the faces first impression.

Therefore to make your beautie more appeare,
It you behoues to loue, and forth to lay
That heauenly riches, which in you ye beare,
That men the more admyre their fountaine may,
For else what booteth that celestiall ray,
If it in darknesse be enshrined euer,
That it of louing eyes be vewed neuer ?

But in your choice of Loues, this well aduize,
That likest to selues
your ye them select, 191
The which your forms first sourse may sym-
pathize,

And with like beauties parts be inly deckt:
For if you loosely loue without respect,

It is no loue, but a discordant warre,

[blocks in formation]

For louers eyes more sharply sighted bee
Then other mens, and in deare loues delight
See more then any other eyes can see,
Through mutuall receipt of beames bright,
Which carrie priuie message to the spright,
And to their eyes that inmost faire display,
As plaine as light discouers dawning day.

Therein they see through amorous eye-glaunces,
Armies of loues still flying too and fro,
Which dart at them their litle fierie launces,

240

Whose vnlike parts amongst themselues do Whom hauing wounded, backe againe they go, iarre.

[blocks in formation]

And know ech other here belou'd to bee.

Then wrong it were that any other twaine
Should in loues gentle band combyned bee,
But those whom heauen did at first ordaine,
And made out of one mould the more t'agree:
For all that like the beautie which they see,
Streight do not loue: for loue is not so light,
As streight to burne at first beholders sight.

But they which loue indeede, looke otherwise,
With pure regard and spotlesse true intent,
Drawing out of the obiect of their eyes,
A more refyned forme, which they present
Vnto their mind, voide of all blemishment;
Which it reducing to her first perfection,
Beholdeth free from fleshes frayle infection.

[blocks in formation]

Carrying compassion to their louely foe;
Who seeing her faire eyes so sharpe effect,
Cures all their sorrowes with one sweete aspect.

In which how many wonders doe they reede
Now of her smiles, with which their soules they
To their conceipt, that others neuer see,
Like Gods with Nectar in their bankets free,
feede,
Now of her lookes, which like to Cordials bee;
But when her words embassade forth she sends,
Lord how sweete musicke that vnto them lends.

Sometimes vpon her forhead they behold
A thousand Graces masking in delight,
Sometimes within her eye-lids they vnfold
Ten thousand sweet belgards, which to their
sight

Doe seeme like twinckling starres in frostie night:

But on her lips, like rosy buds in May,
So many millions of chaste pleasures play.

All those, O Cytherea, and thousands more 260 Thy handmaides be, which do on thee attend To decke thy beautie with their dainties store, That may it more to mortall eyes commend, And make it more admyr'd of foe and frend; That in mens harts thou mayst thy throne enstall

And spred thy louely kingdome ouer all.

Then Iö tryumph, O great beauties Queene,
Aduance the banner of thy conquest hie,
That all this world, the which thy vassals beene,
May draw to thee, and with dew fealtie, 270
Adore the powre of thy great Maiestie,
Singing this Hymne in honour of thy name,
Compyld by me, which thy poore liegeman am.

In lieu whereof graunt, O great Soueraine, That she whose conquering beautie doth captiue

My trembling hart in her eternall chaine,
One drop of grace at length will to me giue,
That I her bounden thrall by her may liue,
And this same life, which first fro me she
reaued,

May owe to her, of whom I it receaued.

280

And you faire Venus dearling, my deare dread,
Fresh flowre of grace, great Goddesse of my life,
When your faire eyes these fearefull lines shal
read,

Deigne to let fall one drop of dew reliefe,
That may recure my harts long pyning griefe,
And shew what wondrous powre your beauty
hath,

That can restore a damned wight from death.
FINIS

AN HYMNE OF
HEAVENLY
LOVE.

Oue, lift me vp vpon thy golden wings,

hight,

Where I may see those admirable things, Which there thou workest by thy soueraine might,

Farre aboue feeble reach of earthly sight, That I thereof an heauenly Hymne may sing Vnto the god of Loue, high heauens king. Christ

Many lewd layes (ah woe is me the more)
In praise of that mad fit, which fooles call
loue,

I haue in th'heat of youth made heretofore,
That in light wits did loose affection moue. II
But all those follies now I do reproue,
And turned haue the tenor of my string,
The heauenly prayses of true loue to sing.
And ye that wont with greedy vaine desire
To reade my fault, and wondring at my flame,
To warme your selues at my wide sparckling
fire,

Sith now that heat is quenched, quench my

blame,

[blocks in formation]

It lou'd it selfe, because it selfe was faire;

(For taire is lou, dead of itself befor

Like to it selfe his eldest sonne and heire,
Eternall, pure, and voide of sinfull blot,
The firstling of his ioy, in whom no iot
Of loues dislike, or pride was to be found,
Whom he therefore with equall honour crownd.
With him he raignd, before all time prescribed,
In endlesse glorie and immortall might,
Together with that third from them derived,
Most wise, most holy, most almightie Spright,
Whose kingdomes throne no thought of earthly
wight

40

Can comprehend, much lesse my trembling verse
With equall words can hope it to reherse.
Yet O most blessed Spirit, pure lampe of light,
Eternall spring of grace and wisedome trew,
Vouchsafe to shed into my barren spright,
That may my rymes with sweet infuse embrew,
Some little drop of thy celestiall dew,
And giue me words equall vnto my thought,
Yet being pregnant still with powrefull grace,
To tell the marueiles by thy mercie wrought.
And full of fruitfull loue, that loues to get 51
Things like himselfe, and to enlarge his race,
His second brood though not in powre so great,
Yet full of beautie, next he did beget
An infinite increase of Angels bright,
All glistring glorious in their Makers light.
To them the heauens illimitable hight,
Not this round heauen, which we from hence behold,
Adornd with thousand lamps of burning light,
And with ten thousand gemmes of shyning gold,
He gaue as their inheritance to hold,
That they might serue him in eternall blis,
And be partakers of those ioyes of his..

61

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

+

There they in their trinall triplicities
About him wait, and on his will depend,
Either with nimble wings to cut the skies,
When he them on his messages doth send,
Or on his owne dread presence to attend,
Where they behold the glorie of his light,
And caroll Hymnes of loue both day and night.
Both day and night is vnto them all one, 71
For he his beames doth still to them extend,
That darknesse there appeareth neuer none,
Ne hath their day, ne hath their blisse an end,
But there their termelesse time in pleasure
spend,

Ne euer should their happinesse decay,
Had not they dar'd their Lord to disobay.
But pride impatient of long resting peace,
Did puffe them vp with greedy bold ambition,
That they gan cast their state how to increase
Aboue the fortune of their first condition, 81
And sit in Gods owne seat without commission:
The brightest Angell, euen the Child of light,
Drew millions more against their God to fight.
Th'Almighty seeing their so bold assay,
Kindled the flame of his consuming yre,
And with his onely breath them blew away
From heauens hight, to which they did aspyre,
To deepest hell, and lake of damned fyre;
Where they in-darknesse and dread horror
dwell,
90

Hating the happie light from which they fell.

So that next off-spring of the Makers loue,
Next to himselfe in glorious degree,
Degendering to hate, fell from aboue

Such he him made, that he resemble might
Himselfe, as mortall thing immortall could;
Him to be Lord of euery liuing wight,
He made by loue out of his owne like mould,
In whom he might his mightie selfe behould:
For loue doth loue the thing belou'd to see,
That like it selfe in louely shape may bee.
But man forgetfull of his makers grace,
No lesse then Angels, whom he did ensew,
Into the mouth of death, to sinners dew,
Fell from the hope of promist heauenly place,
And all his off-spring into thraldome threw :
Where they for euer should in bonds remaine,
Of neuer dead, yet euer dying paine.

120

130

Till that great Lord of Loue, which him at first
Made of meere loue, and after liked well,
Seeing him lie like creature long accurst,
In that deepe horror of despeyred hell,
Him wretch in doole would let no lenger dwell,
But cast out of that bondage to redeeme,
And pay the price, all were his debt extreeme.
Out of the bosome of eternall blisse,
In which he reigned with his glorious syre,
He downe descended, like a most demisse
And abiect thrall, in fleshes fraile attyre,
That he for him might pay sinnes deadly hyre,
And him restore vnto that happie state,
In which he stood before his haplesse fate. 140

In flesh at first the guilt committed was,
Therefore in flesh it must be satisfyde:
Nor spirit, nor Angell, though they man surpas,
Could make amends to God for mans misguyde,

Through pride; (for pride and loue may ill But onely man himselfe, who selfe did slyde.

agree)

100

And now of sinne to all ensample bee:
How then can sinfull flesh it selfe assure,
Sith purest Angels fell to be impure?
But that eternall fount of loue and grace,
Still flowing forth his goodnesse vnto all,
Now seeing left a waste and emptie place
In his wyde Pallace, through those Angels
Cast to supply the same, and to enstall
A new vnknowen Colony therein,
Whose root from earths base groundworke
shold begin.

fall,

Therefore of clay, base, vile, and next to nought,
Yet form'd by wondrous skill, and by his might:
According to an heauenly patterne wrought,
Which he had fashiond in his wise foresight,
He man did make, and breathd a liuing spright
Into his face most beautifull and fayre, III
Endewd with wisedomes riches, heauenly, rare.

So taking flesh of sacred virgins wombe,
For mans deare sake he did a man become.

And that most blessed bodie, which was borne
Without all blemish or reprochfull blame,
Of cruell hands, who with despightfull shame
He freely gaue to be both rent and torne 150
Reuyling him, that them most vile became,
At length him nayled on a gallow tree,
And slew the iust by most vniust decree.
a. acts II.

O huge and most vnspeakeable impression
Of loues deepe wound, that pierst the piteous

hart

Of that deare Lord with so entyre affection,
And sharply launching euery inner part,
Dolours of death into his soule did dart;
Doing him die, that neuer it deserued,
To free his foes, that from his heast had
swerued.

* 21. Ref. 361
Acta Jπ-52
111-14
Matthew-27-19

christ referred to a

[ocr errors]

160

« PreviousContinue »