Verse > Anthologies > Herbert J.C. Grierson, ed. > Metaphysical Lyrics & Poems of the 17th c.
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Herbert J.C. Grierson, ed. (1886–1960). Metaphysical Lyrics & Poems of the 17th C.  1921.
 
Francis Quarles
 
97. CANTICLES II. XVI.
My beloved is mine, and I am his; He feedeth among the Lillies
 
EV'N like two little bank-dividing brookes, 
  That wash the pebles with their wanton streames, 
And having rang'd and search'd a thousand nookes, 
  Meet both at lengthe in silver-brested Thames, 
    Where in a greater Current they conjoyne:         5
So I my Best-Beloveds am; so He is mine. 
  
Ev'n so we met; and after long pursuit, 
  Ev'n so we joyn'd; we both became entire; 
No need for either to renew a Suit, 
  For I was Flax and he was Flames of fire:  10
    Our firm united soules did more than twine; 
So I my Best-Beloveds am; so He is mine. 
  
If all those glittring Monarchs that command 
  The servile Quarters of this earthly Ball, 
Should tender, in Exchange, their shares of land,  15
  I would not change my Fortunes for them all: 
    Their wealth is but a Counter to my Coyne; 
The world 's but theirs; but my Beloved 's mine. 
  
Nay, more; If the fair Thespian Ladies all 
  Should heap together their diviner treasure:  20
That Treasure should be deem'd a price too small 
  To buy a minutes Lease of half my Pleasure; 
    'Tis not the sacred wealth of all the Nine 
Can buy my heart from Him; or His, from being mine. 
  
Nor Time, nor Place, nor Chance, nor Death can bow  25
  My least desires unto the least remove; 
Hee 's firmely mine by Oath; I, His, by Vow; 
  Hee 's mine by Faith; and I am His by Love; 
    Hee 's mine by Water; I am His, by Wine; 
Thus I my Best-Beloveds am; Thus He is mine.  30
  
He is my Altar; I, his Holy Place; 
  I am his Guest; and he, my living Food; 
I'm his, by Poenitence; He, mine by Grace; 
  I'm his, by Purchase; He is mine, by Blood; 
    Hee 's my supporting Elme; and I, his Vine:  35
Thus I my Best-Beloveds am; Thus He is mine. 
  
He gives me wealth; I give him all my Vowes: 
  I give him songs; He gives me length of dayes: 
With wreathes of Grace he crownes my conqu'ring browes: 
  And I, his Temples, with a Crowne of Praise,  40
    Which he accepts as an everlasting signe, 
That I my Best-Beloveds am; that He is mine. 
 
 
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