An Exequy To his Matchlesse never to be forgotten Freind
- 1Accept, thou Shrine of my Dead Saint!
- 2Instead of Dirges this Complaint;
- 3And, for sweet flowres to crowne thy Hearse,
- 4Receive a strew of weeping verse
- 5From thy griev'd Friend; whome Thou might'st see
- 6Quite melted into Teares for Thee.
- 7 Deare Losse! since thy untimely fate
- 8My task hath beene to meditate
- 9On Thee, on Thee: Thou art the Book,
- 10The Library whereon I look
- pg 69 11Though almost blind. For Thee (Lov'd Clay!)
- 12I Languish out, not Live the Day,
- 13Using no other Exercise
- 14But what I practise with mine Eyes.
- 15By which wett glasses I find out
- 16How lazily Time creepes about
- 17To one that mournes: This, only This
- 18My Exercise and bus'nes is:
- 19So I compute the weary howres
- 20With Sighes dissolved into Showres.
- 21 Nor wonder if my time goe thus
- 22Backward and most præposterous;
- 23Thou hast Benighted mee. Thy Sett
- Critical Apparatus24This Eve of blacknes did begett,
- 25Who wast my Day, (though overcast
- 26Before thou hadst thy Noon-tide past)
- 27And I remember must in teares,
- 28Thou scarce hadst seene so many Yeeres
- 29As Day tells Howres. By thy cleere Sunne
- Editor’s Note30My Love and Fortune first did run;
- 31But Thou wilt never more appeare
- 32Folded within my Hemispheare:
- 33Since both thy Light and Motion
- Editor’s Note34Like a fledd Starr is fall'n and gone;
- 35And 'twixt mee and my Soule's deare wish
- Critical Apparatus36The Earth now interposed is,
- 37Which such a straunge Ecclipse doth make
- 38As ne're was read in Almanake.
- 39 I could allow Thee for a time
- 40To darken mee and my sad Clime,
- Editor’s NoteCritical Apparatus41Were it a Month, a Yeere, or Ten,
- 42I would thy Exile live till then;
- Critical Apparatus43And all that space my mirth adjourne,
- 44So Thou wouldst promise to returne,
- 45And putting off thy ashy Shrowd
- 46At length disperse this Sorrowe's Cloud.
- pg 7047 But woe is mee! the longest date
- 48Too narrowe is to calculate
- 49These empty hopes. Never shall I
- 50Be so much blest, as to descry
- Critical Apparatus51A glympse of Thee, till that Day come
- 52Which shall the Earth to cinders doome,
- Critical Apparatus53And a fierce Feaver must calcine
- 54The Body of this World, like Thine,
- 55(My Little World!) That fitt of Fire
- 56Once off, our Bodyes shall aspire
- 57To our Soules' blisse: Then wee shall rise,
- 58And view our selves with cleerer eyes
- 59In that calme Region, where no Night
- 60Can hide us from each other's sight.
- 61 Meane time, thou hast Hir Earth: Much good
- 62May my harme doe thee. Since it stood
- 63With Heaven's will I might not call
- 64Hir longer Mine; I give thee all
- Editor’s Note65My short liv'd right and Interest
- Critical Apparatus66In Hir, whome living I lov'd best:
- Critical Apparatus67With a most free and bounteous grief,
- Critical Apparatus68I give thee what I could not keep.
- 69Be kind to Hir: and prethee look
- Critical Apparatus70Thou write into thy Doomsday book
- 71Each parcell of this Rarity,
- 72Which in thy Caskett shrin'd doth ly:
- 73See that thou make thy reck'ning streight,
- 74And yeeld Hir back againe by weight;
- 75For thou must Auditt on thy trust
- 76Each Grane and Atome of this Dust:
- 77As thou wilt answere Him, that leant,
- 78Not gave thee, my deare Monument.
- 79 So close the ground, and 'bout hir shade
- 80Black Curtaines draw, My Bride is lay'd.
- 81 Sleep on (my Love!) in thy cold bed
- 82Never to be disquieted.
- pg 71 83My last Good-night! Thou wilt not wake
- 84Till I Thy Fate shall overtake:
- 85Till age, or grief, or sicknes must
- 86Marry my Body to that Dust
- 87It so much loves; and fill the roome
- 88My heart keepes empty in Thy Tomb.
- 89Stay for mee there: I will not faile
- Critical Apparatus90To meet Thee in that hollow Vale.
- 91And think not much of my delay;
- 92I am already on the way,
- 93And follow Thee with all the speed
- Critical Apparatus94Desire can make, or Sorrowes breed.
- 95Each Minute is a short Degree
- 96And e'ry Howre a stepp towards Thee.
- 97At Night when I betake to rest,
- 98Next Morne I rise neerer my West
- 99Of Life, almost by eight Howres' sayle,
- 100Then when Sleep breath'd his drowsy gale.
- 101 Thus from the Sunne my Bottome steares,
- Editor’s Note102And my Daye's Compasse downward beares.
- 103Nor labour I to stemme the Tide,
- 104Through which to Thee I swiftly glide.
- 105 'Tis true; with shame and grief I yeild
- Editor’s NoteCritical Apparatus106Thou, like the Vann, first took'st the Field,
- 107And gotten hast the Victory
- 108In thus adventuring to Dy
- 109Before Mee; whose more yeeres might crave
- 110A just præcedence in the Grave.
- 111But hark! My Pulse, like a soft Drum
- 112Beates my Approach, Tells Thee I come;
- 113And, slowe howe're my Marches bee,
- 114I shall at last sitt downe by Thee.
- Editor’s Note115 The thought of this bids mee goe on,
- 116And wait my dissolution
- 117With Hope and Comfort. Deare! (forgive
- 118The Crime) I am content to live
- 119pg 72Divided, with but half a Heart,
- 120Till wee shall Meet and Never part.
24 blacknes] darkness misc. MSS.
30 Life P, in error for Love.
34 is: if M, probably in error from a long ∫in the original.
36 The] An MSS., TM, misc. MSS.
41–42 omitted RP26, C, A27
41 Were it a Month: a omitted by Manne, added by King, H.
43 And all that space] Would willingly RP26, C, A27
51–57 omitted Eg., which readsA glimpse of thee, till we shall rise
53 must] shall TM, misc. MSS., Çbefore correction
65–70 Manuscript variants and omissions in these lines, and the assonance grief/keepin lines 67–68, seem to indicate an imperfect revision.
66 Whereof I lately was possest; N
67–68 transposed N; Most freely though thou see me weep, I gave thee what I could not keep Eg., T
65–68 omitted CCC, Don.
70 omitted, space left, Eg.
90 hollow]hallow 1657.
94 Desire]Desires P.
102 Compass: in spite of the imagery, the meaning extentor limit (O.E.D. 8) is here primarily intended.
106 Vann] Vaunt TM, misc. MSS.(vaunt corrected to vanne Eg.).
106 Vann, Vaunt: the last example of the obsolescent vauntrecorded in the O.E.D. is from Donne's Devotions, 1624.
115 this: which, probably in error, P.