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These are but trifles, I confess,
Which me, weak mortal move;
Nor is your busy-seriousness
Less trifling than my love :
The wisest king, who from his sacred breast
Pronounc'd all vanity, chose it for the best.

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Go bid the needle his dear North forsake,
To which with trembling reverence it does bend;
Go bid the stones a journey upwards make;
Go bid th’ ambitious flame no more ascend:
And, when these false to their own motions prove,
Then shall I cease thee, thee alone, to love.

The fast-link'd chain of everlasting Fate
Does nothing tie more strong than me to you;
My fixt love hangs not on your love or hate,
But will be still the same, whate'er you do:
You cannot kill my love with your disdain;
Wound it you may, and make it live in pain.

Me, mine example, let the Stoicks use,
Their sad and cruel doctrine to maintain;
Let all predestinators me produce,
Who struggle with eternal bonds in vain:
This fire I’m born to—but 'tis she must tell,
Whether’t be beams of heaven or flames of hell.

You, who men's fortunes in their faces read,
To find out mine, look not, alas! on me;
But mark her face, and all the features heed ;
For only there is writ my destiny:
Or, if stars shew it, gaze not on the skies;
But study the astrology of her eyes.

If thou find there kind and propitious rays,
What Mars or Saturn threaten I’ll not fear;
I well believe the fate of mortal days
Is writ in heaven; but oh, my heaven is there.
What can men learn from stars they scarce can see
Two great lights rule the world, and her two, me.


IT gave a piteous groan, and so it broke;
In vain it something would have spoke:
The love within too strong for’t was,

Like poison put into a Venice-glass.

I thought that this some remedy might prove;
But oh, the mighty serpent Love,
Cut by this chance in pieces small,

In all still liv'd, and still it stung in all.

And now, alas! each little broken part
Feels the whole pain of all my heart;

And every smallest corner still
Lives with the torment which the whole did kill.

Even so rude armies, when the field they quit,
And into several quarters get;
Each troop does spoil and ruin more

Than all join'd in one body did before.

How many Loves reign in my bosom now !
How many loves, yet all of you!
Thus have I chang'd with evil fate

My Monarch-love into a Tyrant-state.


THOU’adst to my soul no title or pretence;
I was mine own, and free,
Till I had given myself to thee;
But thou hast kept me slave and prisoner since.
Well, since so insolent thou'rt grown,
Fond tyrant! I'll depose thee from thy throne;
Such outrages must not admitted be
In an elective monarchy.

Part of my heart by gift did to thee fall;
My country, kindred, and my best
Acquaintance, were to share the rest;

But thou, their covetous neighbour, draw'st out all: Nay more; thou mak'st me worship thee, And wouldst the rule of my religion be: Did ever tyrant claim such power as you,

To be both emperor and pope too

The public miseries, and my private fate,
Deserve some tears; but greedy thou
(Insatiate maid!) wilt not allow
That I one drop from thee should alienate:
Nor wilt thou grant my sins a part,
Though the sole cause of most of them thou art;
Counting my tears thy tribute and thy due,
Since first mine eyes I gave to you.

Thou all my joys and all my hopes dost claim;
Thou ragest like a fire in me,
Converting all things into thee;
Nought can resist, or not increase the flame:
Nay, every grief and every fear
Thou dost devour, unless thy stamp it bear:
Thy presence, like the crowned basilisk's breath,
All other serpents puts to death.

As men in hell are from diseases free,
So from all other ills am I;
Free from their known formality:
But all pains eminently lie in thee!
Alas, alas! I hope in vain
My conquer'd soul from out thine hands to gain;
Since all the natives there thou 'ast overthrown,
And planted garrisons of thine own.


THOU worst estate ev’n of the sex that's worst;
Therefore by Nature made at first
To attend the weakness of our birth !
Slight outward curtain to the nuptial bed!
Thou case to buildings not yet finished
Who, like the centre of the earth,
Dost heaviest things attract to thee,
Though thou a point imaginary be '

A thing God thought for mankind so unfit,
That his first blessing ruin’d it.
Cold, frozen nurse of fiercest fires'
Who, like the parched plains of Africk's sand
(A sterile, and a wild unlovely land')
Art always scorch'd with hot desires,
Yet barren quite, didst thou not bring
Monsters and serpents forth thyself to sting !

Thou that bewitchest men whilst thou dost dwell
Like a close conjurer in his cell,
And fear'st the day's discovering eye'
No wonder’t is at all that thou shouldst be
Such tedious and unpleasant company,
Who liv'st so melancholily
Thou thing of subtile, slippery kind,
Which women lose, and yet no man can find '

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