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Some things that may sweeten gladness In the very gall of sadness. The dull loneness, the black shade, That these hanging vaults have made ; The strange music of the waves, Beating on these hollow caves; This black den which rocks emboss, Overgrown with eldest moss; The rude portals, which give light More to terror than delight; This my chamber of Neglect, Wall'd about with Disrespect: From all these and this dull air, A fit object for despair, She hath taught me by her might To draw comfort and delight. Therefore, thou best earthly bliss, I will cherish thee for this; Poesy, thou sweet'st content That e'er heaven to mortals lent, Though they as a trifle leave thee, Whose dull thoughts cannot conceive thee; Though thou be to them a scorn, Who to naught but earth are born; Let my life no longer be Than I am in love with thee. Though our wise ones call it madness, Let me never taste of sadness, If I love not thy madd'st fits Above all their greatest wits. And though some, too, seeming holy, Do account thy raptures folly, Thou dost teach me to contemn What makes knaves and fools of them.

DR. HENRY King. 1591-1669.


LIKE to the falling of a star,
Or as the flights of eagles are;
Or like the fresh spring's gaudy hue,
Or silver drops of morning dew;
Or like the wind that chafes the flood,
Or bubbles which on water stood:
Ev'n such is man, whose borrow'd light
Is straight call'd in, and paid to night.
The wind blows out, the bubble dies;
The spring entomb'd in autumn lies :
The dew dries up, the star is shot;
The flight is past-and man forgot.


What is the existence of man's life
But open war or slumber'd strife ?
Where sickness to his sense presents
The combat of the elements,
And never feels a perfect peace
Till death's cold hand signs his release.
It is a storm—where the hot blood
Outvies in rage the boiling flood :
And each loud passion of the mind
Is like a furious gust of wind,
Which beats the bark with many a wave,
Till he casts anchor in the grave.
It is a flower—which buds, and grows,
And withers, as the leaves disclose ;
Whose spring and fall faint seasons keep,
Like fits of waking before sleep,
Then slips into that fatal mould
Where its first being was enroll'd.

It is a dream-whose seeming truth
Is moralized in age and youth;
Where all the comforts he can share
As wand'ring as his fancies are,
Till in a mist of dark decay
The dreamer vanish quite away.

It is a dial—which points out
The sunset as it moves about ;
And shadows out in lines of night
The subtle stages of Time's flight,
Till all-obscuring earth hath laid
His body in perpetual shade.
It is a weary interlude-
Which doth short joys, long woes, include:
The world the stage, the prologue tears ;
The acts vain hopes and varied fears ;
The scene shuts up with loss of breath,
And leaves no epilogue but Death!

JOHN MILTON. 1608–1674.

HENCE, loathed Melancholy,
Of Cerberus and blackest Midnight born,
In Stygian cave forlorn,

'Mongst horrid shapes, and shrieks, and sights unFind out some uneouth cell,

[holy! Where brooding Darkness spreads his jealous And the night-raven sings ;

(wings, There underebon shades, and low-brow'd rocks, As ragged as thy locks, In dark Cimmerian desert ever dwell.

But come, thou goddess fair and free, In heaven ycelp'd Euphrosyne, And by men heart-easing Mirth; Whom lovely Venus at a birth, With two sister Graces more, To ivy-crowned Bacchus bore: Or whether (as some sages sing) The frolic wind that breathes the spring, Zephyr with Aurora playing, As he met her once a-maying; There on beds of violets blue, And fresh-blown roses wash'd in dew, Fillid her with thee, a daughter fair, So buxom, blithe, and debonair.

Haste thee, nymph, and bring with thee Jest and youthful jollity, Quips, and cranks, and wanton wiles, Nods, and becks, and wreathed smiles, Such as hang on Hebe's cheek, And love to live in dimple sleek: Sport that wrinkled Care derides, And Laughter holding both his sides. Come, and trip it, as you go, On the light fantastic toe; And in thy right hand lead with thee The mountain-nymph, sweet Liberty; And, if I give thee honour due, Mirth, admit me of thy crew, To live with her and live with thee, In unreproved pleasures free. To hear the lark begin his flight, And, singing, startle the dull night, From his watch-tower in the skies, Till the dappled dawn doth rise ; Then to come, in spite of sorrow, And at my window bid good-morrow, Through the sweet-brier, or the vine, Or the twisted eglantine :

While the cock, with lively din,
Scatters the rear of darkness thin,
And to the stack or the barn-door
Stoutly struts his dames before;
Oft listening how the hounds and horn
Cheerly rouse the slumbering morn,
From the side of some hoar hill,
Through the high wood echoing shrill.
Some time walking, not unseen,
By hedge-row elms,on hillocks green,
Right against the eastern gate
Where the great Sun begins his state,
Robed in flames and amber light,
The clouds in thousand liveries dight ;
While the ploughman, near at hand,
Whistles o'er the furrow'd land,
And the milkmaid singeth blithe,
And the mower whets his scythe,
And every shepherd tells his tale
Under the hawthorn in the dale.
Straight mine eye hath caught new pleasures
Whilst the landscape round it measures ;
Russet lawns and fallows gray,
Where the nibbling flocks do stray;
Mountains, on whose barren breast
The labouring clouds do often rest;
Meadows trim with daisies pied,
Shallow brooks and rivers wide :
Towers and battlements it sees
Bosom'd high in tufted trees,
Where perhaps some beauty lies,
The cynosure of neighbouring eyes.
Hard by a cottage chimney smokes,
From betwixt two aged oaks,
Where Corydon and Thyrsis, met,
Are at their savoury dinner set,
Of herbs and other country messes,
Which the neat-handed Phillis dresses ;

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