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To sleep without thee is to die;
Yea, 'tis a death partakes of hell:
For where thou dost not close the eye,
It never opens, I can tell.

In such a dark, Ægyptian border,
The shades of death dwell and disorder.

If joyes and hopes, and earnest throes,
And hearts whose pulse beats still for light,
Are given to birds; who, but thee, knows
A love-sick soul's exalted flight?

Can souls be track'd by any eye
But His who gave them wings to flie?

Onely this veyle which thou hast broke,
And must be broken yet in me,
This veyle, I say, is all the cloke
And cloud which shadows me from thee.

This veyle thy full-ey'd love denies,
And onely gleams and fractions spies.

O take it off ! make no delay ;
But brush me with thy light, that I
May shine unto a perfect day,
And warme me at thy glorious eye!

O take it off! or till it flee,
Though with no lilie, stay with me!


WHATEVER ’tis, whose beauty here below Attracts thee thus, and makes thee stream and flo

And wind and curle, and wink and smile,

Shifting thy gate and guile,

Though thy close commerce nought at all imbarrs My present search, for eagles eye not starrs;

And still the lesser by the best

And highest good is blest;

Yet, seeing all things that subsist and be
Have their commissions from Divinitie,

And teach us duty, I will see

What man may learn from thee.

First, I am sure, the subject so respected
Is well disposed; for bodies, once infected,

Deprav’d, or dead, can have with thee

No hold nor sympathie.

Next, there's in it a restless, pure desire
And longing for thy bright and vitall fire,

Desire that never will be quench’d,

Nor can be writh'd nor wrench’d.

These are the magnets, which so strongly move And work all night upon thy light and love;

As beauteous shapes, we know not why,

Command and guide the eye.

For where desire, celestiall, pure desire,
Hath taken root, and grows, and doth not tire,

There God a commerce states, and sheds

His secret on their heads.

This is the heart he craves; and who so will
But give it him, and grudge not, he shall feel

That God is true, as herbs unseen

Put on their youth and green.


DEARE friend, sit down, and bear awhile this shade,
As I have yours long since: this plant, you see
So prest and bow'd, before sin did degrade
Both you and it, had equall liberty

With other trees; but now shut from the breath
And air of Eden, like a mal-content
It thrives no where. This makes these weights, like

And sin, hang at him; for the more he's bent,

The more he grows. Celestial natures still
Aspire for home; this Solomon of old

By flowers and carvings and mysterious skill
Of wings, and cherubims, and palms foretold.


This is the life which, hid above with Christ
In God, doth always hidden multiply,
And spring and grow, a tree ne’r to be priced,
A tree whose fruit is immortality.

Here spirits that have run their race, and fought, And won the fight, and have not feared the frowns Nor lov’d the smiles of greatness, but have wrought Their Master's will, meet to receive their crowns.

Here is the patience of the saints : this tree
Is water'd by their tears, as flowers are fed
With dew by night; but One you cannot see
Sits here, and numbers all the tears they shed.

Here is their faith too, which if you will keep
When we two part, I will a journey make
To pluck a garland hence while you do sleep,
And weave it for your head against you wake.


Be dumb, coarse measures ; jar no more; to me
There is no discord but your harmony,
False, jugling sounds; a grone well drest where care
Moves in disguise, and sighs afflict the air.

Sorrows in white; griefs tun'd; a sugerd dosis
Of wormwood, and a death’s-head crown'd with roses.
He weighs not your forc'd accents, who can have
A lesson plaid him by a winde or wave.
Such numbers tell their days, whose spirits be
Lull’d by those charmers to a lethargy.

But as for thee, whose faults long since require
More eyes than stars, whose breath, could it aspire
To equal winds, would prove too short : thou hast
Another mirth, a mirth, though overcast
With clouds and rain, yet full as calm and fine
As those clear heights which above tempests shine.

Therefore, while the various showers
Kill and cure the tender flowers,
While the winds refresh the year
Now with clouds, now making clear,
Be sure under pains of death
To ply both thine eyes and breath.

As leafs in bowers
Whisper their hours,
And hermit-wells

Drop in their cells;
So in sighs and unseen tears

Pass thy solitary years, And going hence leave written on some tree, “Sighs make joy sure, and shaking fastens thee."

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