Imatges de pÓgina

In the following

cerning manna:

vo Love was with thy life entwined, 43 He to wglo
Close as heat with fire is join'd; de un

A powerful brand prescribed the date
Of thine, like Meleager's fate.

Th' antiperistasis of age

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More enflam'd thy amorous rage.1 ball

verses we have an allusion to a rabbinical opinion con

Variety I ask not: give me one

To live perpetually upon.

The person Love does to us fit,

Like manna, has the taste of all in it.

Thus Donne shows his medicinal knowledge in some encomiastic verses :

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Though the following lines of Donne, on the last night of the year, have something in them too scholastic, they are not inelegant :

This twilight of two years, not past nor next,
Some emblem is of me, or I of this,
Who, meteor-like, of stuff and form perplext,
Whose what and where in disputation is,
If I should call me anything, should miss.
I sum the years and me, and find me not

Debtor to th' old, nor creditor to th' new.6 UTW
That cannot say, my thanks I have forgot, noi!]}{
Nor trust I this with hopes; and yet scarce true

This bravery is, since these times show'd me you.-DONNE.

Yet more abstruse and profound is Donne's reflection upon man as a microcosm:d :o

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If men be worlds, there is in every one
Something to answer in some proportion;
All the world's riches; and in good men, this
Virtue, our form's form, and our soul's soul, is.

Of thoughts so far-fetched, as to be not only unexpected, but unnatural, all their books are full..

To a Lady, who wrote posies for rings:

They, who above do various circles find,row unti punt bobito}/9

Say, like a ring, th' equator Heaven does bind.

When Heaven shall be adorn'd by thee,

(Which then more Heaven than 'tis will be) A

'Tis thou must write the poesy there,

For it wanteth one as yet,

Then the sun pass through't twice a year,

The sun, which is esteem'd the god of wit.-COWLEY.

The difficulties which have been raised about identity in philosophy are by Cowley, with still more perplexity, applied to love:

Five years ago (says story) I loved you,
For which you call me most inconstant now;
Pardon me, madam, you mistake the man;
For I am not the same that I was then:
No flesh is now the same 'twas then in me,
And that my mind is changed yourself may see.
The same thoughts to retain still, and intents,
Were more inconstant far; for accidents

Must of all things most strangely inconstant prove,
If from one subject they t' another move;

My members then the father members were,

From whence these take their birth, which now are here.

If then this body love what th' other did,

'Twere incest, which by nature is forbid.

The love of different women is, in geographical poetry, compared to travels through different countries :

Hast thou not found each woman's breast

(The land where thou hast travelled) Either by savages possest,

Or wild, and uninhabited ?

What joy could'st take, or what repose,
In countries so unciviliz'd as those?
Lust, the scorching dog-star, here
Rages with immoderate heat;

Whilst Pride, the rugged northern bear,
In others makes the cold too great..

And where these are temperate known,

The soil's all barren sand, or rocky stone.-COWLEY.

A lover, burnt up by his affection, is compared to Egypt:

The fate of Egypt I sustain,

And never feel the dew of rain,

From clouds which in the head appear;

But all my too-much moisture owe

To overflowings of the heart below.-COWLEY.

The lover supposes his lady acquainted with the ancient laws of augury and rites of sacrifice:

And yet this death of mine, I fear,

Will ominous to her appear:

When, sound in every other part,

Her sacrifice is found without an heart.
For the last tempest of my death

Shall sigh out that too, with my breath.

That the chaos was harmonized, has been recited of old; but whence the different sounds arose, remained for a modern to discover:

Th' ungovern'd parts no correspondence knew;
An artless war from thwarting motions grew;
Till they to number and fixed rules were brought.
Water and air he for the tenor chose,

Earth made the base; the treble flame arose.-COWLEY.

The tears of lovers are always of great poetical account; but Donne has extended them into worlds. If the lines are not easily understood, they may be read again :

On a round ball

A workman, that hath copies by, can lay

An Europe, Afric, and an Asia,

And quickly make that which was nothing, all.

So doth each tear,

Which thee doth wear,

A globe, yea world, by that impression grow,

Till thy tears mixed with mine do overflow

This world, by waters sent from thee my heaven dissolved so.

On reading the following lines, the reader may perhaps cry out "Confu

sion worse confounded."

Here lies a she sun, and a he moon here,

She gives the best light to his sphere,
Or each is both, and all, and so

They unto one another nothing owe.-DONNE,


Who but Donne would have thought that a good man is a telescope?
Though God be our true glass through which we see

All, since the being of all things is he,

Yet are the trunks, which do to us derive
Things in proportion fit, by perspective

Deeds of good men; for by their living here,

Virtues, indeed remote, seem to be near.

Who would imagine it possible that in a very few lines so many remote ideas could be brought together?

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To sell thyself dost thou intend
By candles end,

And hold the contract thus in doubt,
Life's taper out?

Think but how soon the market fails,
Your sex lives faster than the males;
And if to measure age's span,

The sober Julian were th' account of man,

Whilst you live by the fleet Gregorian.-CLEVELAND.

Of enormous and disgusting hyperboles, these may be examples:

By every wind that comes this way,

Send me at least a sigh or two,

Such and so many I'll repay

As shall themselves make winds to get to you.-COWLEY.

In tears I'll waste these eyes,

By love so vainly fed:

So lust of old the deluge punished.-COWLEY.

#3 All arm'd in brass, the richest dress of war,
(A dismal glorious sight!) he shone afar.
The sun himself started with sudden fright,
To see his beams return so dismal bright.-CoWLEY.

An universal consternation:

His bloody eyes he hurls round, his sharp paws
Tear up the ground; then runs he wild about,
Lashing his angry tail and roaring out. vole
Beasts creep into their dens, and tremble there;
Trees, though no wind is stirring, shake with fear;
Silence and horror fill the place around;

Echo itself dares scarce repeat the sound.-COWLEY.

Their fictions were often violent and unnatural.

Of his mistress bathing:

The fish around her crowded, as they do

To the false light that treacherous fishers show,

And all with as much ease might taken be,
As she at first took me;

For ne'er did light so clear

Among the waves appear,

Though every night the sun himself set there.-COWLEY.

The poetical effect of a lover's name upon glass:

My name engraved herein

Doth contribute my firmness to this glass:
Which, ever since that charm, hath been

As hard as that which graved it was.-DONNE.

Their conceits were sometimes slight and trifling.
On an inconstant woman:

Sacombe He enjoys the calmy sunshine now,

And no breath stirring hears,
In the clear heaven of thy brow
No smallest cloud appears.

He sces thee gentle, fair, and gay,

And trusts the faithless April of thy May.-CowLEY.

Upon a paper written with the juice of lemon, and read by the fire:

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Nothing yet in thee is seen,

But when a genial heat warms thee within,

A new-born wood of various lines there grows;

Here buds an L, and there a B,

Here sprouts a V, and there a T,

And all the flourishing letters stand in rows.-COWLEY.

As they sought only for novelty, they did not much inquire whether their allusions were to things high or low, elegant or gross; whether they compared the little to the great, or the great to the little.

Physic and chirurgery for a lover.

Gently, ah gently, madam, touch

The wound, which you yourself have made;
That pain must needs be very much,
Which makes me of your hand afraid.
Cordials of pity give me now,

For I too weak of purgings grow.-COWLEY.

The world and a clock.

Mahol th' inferior world's fantastic face

Through all the turns of matter's maze did trace;
Great Nature's well-set clock in pieces took;

On all the springs and smallest wheels did look!

Of life and motion, and with equal art

Made up the whole again of every part.-COWLEY.

A coal-pit has not often found its poet; but, that it may not want its due honour, Cleveland has paralleled it with the sun :

The moderate value of our guiltless ore

Makes no man atheist, and no woman whore;
Yet why should hallow'd vestal's sacred shrine
Deserve more honour than a flaming mine?
These pregnant wombs of heat would fitter be,
Than a few embers, for a deity.

Had he our pits, the Persian would admire
No sun, but warm's devotion at our fire:
He'd leave the trotting whipster, and prefer

Our profound Vulcan 'bove that waggoner.

For wants he heat, or light? or would have store

Of both ? 'tis here: and what can suns give more?
Nay, what's the sun but, in a different name,

A coal-pit rampant, or a mine on flame?
Then let this truth reciprocally run,

The sun's heaven's coalery, and coals our sun.

Death, a voyage:

No family

E'er rigg'd a soul for Heaven's discovery,
With whom more venturers might boldly dare

Venture their stakes with him in joy to share.-DONNE.Lecleor on

Their thoughts and expressions were sometimes grossly absurd, and such as no figures or licence can reconcile to the understanding.

A lover neither dead nor alive :

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Ah, sottish soul, said I,

When back to its cage again I saw it fly;
Fool to resume her broken chain,

And row her galley here again!
Fool, to that body to return

Where it condemned and destined is to burn!

Once dead, how can it be,

Death should a thing so pleasant seem to thee,

That thou should'st come to live it o'er again in me P-COWLEX. ConDhy

A fover's heart, a hand grenado:

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Wo to her stubborn heart, if once mine come

an Into the self same room;

"Twill tear and blow up all within,

Like a grenado shot into a magazin.

Then shall Love keep the ashes, and torn parts,int

Of both our broken hearts;

Shall out of both one new one make;

From hers th' allay, from mine the metal take.-COWLEY.

The poetical propagation of light:

The prince's favour is diffused o'er all,

From which all fortunes, names, and natures fall:

Then from those wombs of stars, the Bride's bright eyes,

At every glance a constellation flies,

And sowes the court with stars, and doth prevent

In light and power, the all-ey'd firmament:

First her eye kindles other ladies' eyes,

Then from their beams their jewels' lustres rise;
And from their jewels torches do take fire,

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And all is warmth, and light, and good desire.-DONNE.

They were in very little care to clothe their notions with elegance of dress, and therefore miss the notice and the praise which are often gained by those who think less, but are more diligent to adorn their thoughts.

That a mistress beloved is fairer in idea than in reality is by Cowley thus expressed:

Thou in my fancy dost much higher stand
Than woman can be placed by Nature's hand;
And I must needs, I'm sure, a loser be,

To change thee as thou'rt there, for very thee.

That prayer and labour should co-operate are thus taught by Donne:
In none but us are such mix'd engines found, be anal

As hands of double office; for the ground

We till with them; and them to heaven we raise;
Who prayerless labours, or, without this, prays,
Doth but one half, that 's none.

By the same author, a common topic, the danger of procrastination, is

thus illustrated digg d

That which I should have begun

In my youth's morning, now late must be done;

gun god And I, as giddy travellers must do,

Which stray or sleep all day, and having lost

Light and strength, dark and tired, must then ride post.

All that man has to do is to live and die; the sum

prehended by Donne in the following lines:

Think in how poor a prison thou didst lie;

After enabled but to suck and cry.

humanity is com→

Think, when 'twas grown to most, 'twas a poor inn,
A province pack'd up in two yards of skin,

And that usurp'd, or threaten'd with a rage

Of sicknesses or their true mother, age, wol bsob d'omb

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