Verse > Anthologies > Edward Farr, comp. > Jacobean Poetry
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Edward Farr, ed.  Select Poetry of the Reign of King James the First.  1847.
 
Sonnets from “Pentelogia”
XXI. Francis Quarles
 
Mors Christi.

AND am I here, and my Redeemer gone?
Can he be dead, and is not my life done?
Was he tormented in excesse of measure,
And doe I live yet? and yet live in pleasure?
Alas! could sinners finde out ne’r a one        5
More fit than thee for them to spit upon?
Did thy cheekes entertaine a traytor’s lips?
Was thy deare body scourg’d and torne with whips,
So that the guiltlesse blood came trickling after?
And did thy fainting browes sweat blood and water?        10
Wert thou (Lord) hang’d upon the cursed tree?
O world of griefe! and was all this for me?
Burst forth, my teares, into a world of sorrow,
And let my nights of griefe finde ne’r a morrow:
Since thou art dead (Lord) grant thy servant roome        15
Within his heart to build thy heart a tombe.
 
Mors Tua.

CAN he be faire, that withers at a blast?
Or he be strong, that ayery breath can cast?
Can he be wise, that knowes not how to live?
Or he be rich, that nothing hath to give?        20
Can he be young, that’s feeble, weake, and wan?
So faire, strong, wise, so rich, so young is man:
So faire is man, that death (a parting blast)
Blasts his faire flow’r, and makes him earth at last;
So strong is man, that with a gasping breath        25
He totters, and bequeathes his strength to death;
So wise is man, that if with death he strive
His wisdome cannot teach him how to live;
So rich is man that (all his debts b’ing paid)
His wealth’s the winding-sheet wherein he’s laid;        30
So young is man, that, broke with care and sorrow,
He’s old enough to day to dye to-morrow.
Why bragg’st thou then, thou worme of five foot long;
Th’ art neither faire, nor strong, nor wise, nor rich, nor yong.
 
Gloria Cœli.

WHEN I behold, and well advise upon
        35
The wise man’s speech, There’s nought beneath the sun
But vanitie, my soule rebels within,
And loathes the dunghill prison she is in:
But when I looke to new Jerusalem,
Wherein’s reserv’d my crowne, my diadem,        40
O what a heaven of blisse my soule enjoyes,
On sudden wrapt into that heaven of ioyes!
Where (ravisht in the depth of meditation)
She well discernes, with eye of contemplation,
The glory of God in his imperiall seat;        45
Full strong in might, in majestie compleate,
Where troops of powers, vertues, cherubims,
Angels, archangel, saints and seraphims,
Are chaunting praises to their heavenly King—
Where Hallelujah they for ever sing.        50
 
 
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