Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > The Book of Restoration Verse
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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed.  The Book of Restoration Verse.  1910.
 
To Mrs. M. A. at Parting
By Katherine Philips (‘Orinda’) (1632–1664)
 
I HAVE examined and do find,
  Of all that favour me,
There’s none I grieve to leave behind
  But only, only thee.
To part with thee I needs must die,        5
Could parting separate thee and I.
 
But neither chance nor compliment
  Did element our love:
’Twas sacred sympathy was lent
  Us from the quire above.        10
(That friendship fortune did create,
Still fears a wound from time or fate.)
 
Our changed and mingled souls are grown
  To such acquaintance now,
That if each would resume their own,        15
  Alas! we know not how.
We have each other so engrost,
That each is in the union lost.
 
And thus we can no absence know,
  Nor shall we be confined;        20
Our active souls will daily go
  To learn each other’s mind.
Nay, should we never meet to sense,
Our souls would hold intelligence.
 
Inspired with a flame divine        25
  I scorn to court a stay;
For from that noble soul of thine
  I ne’er can be away.
But I shall weep when thou dost grieve;
Nor can I die whilst thou dost live.        30
 
By my own temper I shall guess
  At thy felicity,
And only like my happiness
  Because it pleaseth thee.
Our hearts at any time will tell        35
If thou, or I, be sick, or well.
 
All honour, sure, I must pretend,
  All that is good or great;
She that would be Rosania’s friend
  Must be at least complete:        40
If I have any bravery,
’Tis cause I have so much of thee.
 
Thy lieger soul in me shall lie,
  And all thy thoughts reveal;
Then back again with mine shall fly,        45
  And thence to me shall steal.
Thus still to one another tend:
Such is the sacred name of friend.
 
Thus our twin-souls in one shall grow,
  And teach the world new love,        50
Redeem the age and sex, and show
  A flame fate dares not move:
And courting death to be our friend,
Our lives, together too, shall end.
 
A dew shall dwell upon our tomb        55
  Of such a quality
That fighting armies, thither come,
  Shall reconcilèd be.
We’ll ask no epitaph, but say:
ORINDA and ROSANIA.        60
 
 
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