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Beseeming well the bower of any queen,
With gifts of wit and ornaments of nature,
Fit for so goodly stature,

That like the twins of Jove they seem'd in sight 5 Which deck the baldric of the Heavens bright; They two, forth pacing to the river's side,

Received those two fair brides, their love's delight; Which, at th' appointed tide,

Each one did make his bride

10 Against their bridal day, which is not long:

Sweet Thames! run softly, till I end my song.

E. Spenser



Art thou poor, yet hast thou golden slumbers?
O sweet content!

Art thou rich, yet is thy mind perplex'd?
O punishment!

5 Dost thou laugh to see how fools are vex'd
To add to golden numbers, golden numbers?
O sweet content! O sweet, O sweet content!
Work apace, apace, apace, apace;
Honest labour bears a lovely face;

10 Then hey nonny nonny, hey nonny nonny!

Canst drink the waters of the crispéd spring?
O sweet content!

Swimm'st thou in wealth, yet sink'st in thine own tears?

O punishment!

15 Then he that patiently want's burden bears
No burden bears, but is a king, a king!
O sweet content! O sweet, O sweet content!
Work apace, apace, apace, apace;
Honest labour bears a lovely face;

20 Then hey nonny nonny, hey nonny nonny!

T. Dekker



Come, cheerful day, part of my life to me; For while thou view'st me with thy fading light Part of my life doth still depart with thee, And I still onward haste to my last night: 5 Time's fatal wings do ever forward fly— So every day we live a day we die.


But O ye nights, ordain'd for barren rest,
How are my days deprived of life in you
When heavy sleep my soul hath dispossest,
By feigned death life sweetly to renew!
Part of my life, in that, you life deny:
So every day we live, a day we die.

T. Campion




This Life, which seems so fair,

Is like a bubble blown up in the air
By sporting children's breath,

Who chase it everywhere

And strive who can most motion it bequeath.

And though it sometimes seem of its own might

Like to an eye of gold to be fix'd there,

And firm to hover in that empty height,

That only is because it is so light.

-But in that pomp it doth not long appear;
For when 'tis most admired, in a thought,
Because it erst was nought, it turns to nought.
W. Drummond



Poor Soul, the centre of my sinful earth, [Foil'd by] those rebel powers that thee array, Why dost thou pine within, and suffer dearth, Painting thy outward walls so costly gay? 5 Why so large cost, having so short a lease, Dost thou upon thy fading mansion spend? Shall worms, inheritors of this excess,

Eat up thy charge? is this thy body's end? Then, Soul, live thou upon thy servant's loss, 10 And let that pine to aggravate thy store; Buy terms divine in selling hours of dross; Within be fed, without be rich no more:So shalt thou feed on death, that feeds on men, And death once dead, there's no more dying then. W. Shakespeare

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Of this fair volume which we World do name
If we the sheets and leaves could turn with care,
Of Him who it corrects, and did it frame,
We clear might read the art and wisdom rare:
5 Find out His power which wildest powers doth tame,
His providence extending everywhere,

His justice which proud rebels doth not spare,
In every page, no period of the same

But silly we, like foolish children, rest

10 Well pleased with colour'd vellum, leaves of gold,
Fair dangling ribbands, leaving what is best,
On the great Writer's sense ne'er taking hold;
Or if by chance we stay our minds on aught,
It is some picture on the margin wrought.

W. Drummond.


Doth then the world go thus, doth all thus move?
Is this the justice which on Earth we find?
Is this that firm decree which all doth bind?
Are these your influences, Powers above?

5 Those souls which vice's moody mists most blind, Blind Fortune, blindly, most their friend doth prove; And they who thee, poor idol Virtue! love,

Ply like a feather toss'd by storm and wind.
Ah! if a Providence doth sway this all

10 Why should best minds groan under most distress? Or why should pride humility make thrall,

And injuries the innocent oppress?

Heavens! hinder, stop this fate; or grant a time When good may have, as well as bad, their prime! W. Drummond



Tired with all these, for restful death I cryAs, to behold desert a beggar born, And needy nothing trimm'd in jollity, And purest faith unhappily forsworn, 5 And gilded honour shamefully misplaced, And maiden virtue rudely strumpeted, And right perfection wrongfully disgraced, And strength by limping sway disabled, And art made tongue-tied by authority, 10 And folly, doctor-like, controlling skill, And simple truth miscall'd simplicity, And captive Good attending captain Ill:-Tired with all these, from these would I be gone, Save that, to die, I leave my Love alone. W. Shakespeare

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