Page images

And though it in the centre sit,
Yet when the other far doth roam,
It leans, and hearkens after it,
And grows erect as that comes home.
Such wilt thou be to me, who must
Like th' other foot, obliquely run;
Thy firmness makes my circles just,

And makes me end where I begun.
But we turn with more pleasure to his prose -


The Psalms are the manna of the church. As manna tasted to every man like that he liked best, so do the Psalms minister instruction and satisfaction to every man, in every emergency and occasion. David was not only a clear prophet of Christ himself, but a prophet of every particular Christian ; he foretells what I, what any shall do, and suffer, and say. And as the whole Book of Psalms is (as the spouse speaks of the name of Christ) an ointment poured out upon all sorts of sores, a cerecloth that supples all bruises, a balm that searches all wounds; so are there some certain Psalms that are imperial Psalms, that command over all affections, and spread themselves over all occasions, catholic, universal Psalms, that apply themselves to all necessities.

ALL CHRISTIANS ARE TO PREACH BY EXAMPLE. If you be a holy people, you are also a royal priesthood; if you be all God's saints, you are all God's priests; and if you

be his priests, it is your office to preach too; as we by words, you by your holy works; as we by contemplation, you by conversation ; as we by our doctrine, so you by your lives, are appointed by God to preach to one another: and therefore every particular man must wash his own feet, look that he have speciosos pedes, that his example may preach to others, for this is truly a regal priesthood, not to work upon others by words, but by actions. If we love one another as Christ loved us, we must wash one another's feet, as he commanded his apostles; there is a priestly duty lies upon every man, brotherly to reprehend a brother whom he sees trampling in foul ways, wallowing in foul sins.

GOD MAY BE WORSHIPPED ANYWHERE. It is true, God may be devoutly worshipped anywhere ; in all places of his dominion, my soul shall praise the Lord, says David. It is not only a concurring of men, a meeting of so many bodies that makes a church; if thy soul and body be met together, an

1 Pure feet.


humble preparation of the mind, and a reverent disposition of the body; if thy knees be bent to the earth, thy hands and eyes lifted up to heaven; if thy tongue pray, and praise, and thine ears hearken to his answer; if all thy senses, and powers, and facuities be met with one unanime purpose to worship thy God, thou art, to this intendment, a church, thou art a congregation; here are two or three met together in his name, and he is in the midst of them, though thou be alone in thy chamber. The church of God should be built upon a rock, and yet Job had his church upon a dunghill; the church is to be placed upon the top of a hill, and yet the prophet Jeremy had his church in a miry dungeon; constancy and settledness belong to the church, and Jonah had his church in the whale's belly; the lion that roars, and seeks whom he may devour, is an enemy to this church, and yet Daniel had his church in the lion's den; the waters of rest in the Psalm were a figure of the church, and yet the three children had their church in the fiery furnace; liberty and life appertain to the church, and yet Peter and Paul had their church in prison, and the thief had his church upon the cross. Every particular man is himself a temple of the Holy Ghost; yea, destroy this body by death and corruption in the grave, and yet there shall be a renewing, a re-edifying of all those temples, in the general resurrection: when we shall rise again, not only as so many Christians, but as so many Christian churches, to glorify the apostle and high-priest of our profession, Christ Jesus, in that eternal Sabbath. Every person, every place is fit to glorify God in.


I lack one

There cannot be so great a cross as to have none. loaf of that daily bread that I pray for, if I have no cross; for afflictions are our spiritual nourishment: I lack one limb of that body I must grow into, which is the body of Christ Jesus, if I have no crosses ; for, my conformity to Christ (and that is my being made up into his body) must be accomplished in my fulfilling his sufferings in his flesh.


Anger is not always a defect, nor an inordinateness in man; Be angry, and sin not: anger is not utterly to be rooted out of our ground and cast away, but transplanted ; a gardener does well to grub up thorns in his garden ; there they would hinder good herbs from growing: but he does well to plant those thorns in his hedges ; there they keep bad neighbors from entering. In many cases, where there is no anger, there is not much zeal.

MICHAEL DRAYTON. 1563—1631. Tais very voluminous and once popular writer has sunk into an oblivion which he does not deserve. His poems are mostly of an historical and topographical character. Such is his great work, his “ Poly-Olbion,"! a work of stupendous labor and accurate information, on which he rested his hopes of immortality. It is a very singular poem, and certainly entirely original in its plan, describing the woods, mountains, valleys, and rivers of England, with all their associations, traditional, historical, and antiquarian. That wit possesses many beauties which are poetically great, and is full of delineations which are graphically correct,” is no doubt true; but, after all, it is a poem that will always be consulted rather for the information it conveys, than for the pleasure it produces. His other historical poems are his " Barons Warres," being an account of “The lamentable Civil Warres of Edward the Second and the Barons;" his “ Legends;" his « Battle of Agincourt;' and “ England's Heroical Epistles.”

But it is for his pastoral and miscellaneous poems that Drayton will continue to be known and valued. Some of these possess beauties of the highest order. Such, for instance, is the fairy poem called Nymphidia, than which a more exquisite creation of the fancy can hardly be found; and it has been well remarked, that “ had he written nothing else he would deserve immortality." His “Shepherd's Garland” is a pastoral poem, first published under this title, but afterwards revised and reprinted under the name of Eclogues. His other miscellaneous poems consist of odes, elegies, sonnets, religious effusions, &c. Drayton died December 23, 1631, and was buried in Westminster Abbey:

[ocr errors]


When Phæbus lifts his head ont of the winter's wave,
No sooner does the earth her flowery bosom brave,
At such time as the year brings on the pleasant spring,
But “hunt's-up" to the morn the featherd sylvans sing:
And in the lower grove, as on the rising knoll,
Upon the highest spray of every mounting pole
Those quiristers are perched, with many a speckled breast.
Then from her burnish'd gate the goodly glittering East
Gilds every lofty top, which late the humorous night
Bespangled had with pearl to please the morning's sight:
On which the mirthful quires, with their clear open throats,
Unto the joyful morn so strain their warbling notes,
That hills and valleys ring, and even the echoing air
Seems all composed of sounds, about them everywhere.
The throstle, with shrill sharps; as purposely he song
T awake the lustless sun; or chiding that so long
He was in coming forth, that should the thickets thrill;
The woosel near at hand, that hath a golden bill;
As nature him had markt of purpose to let see
That from all other birds his tunes should different be,

1 From the Greek rola (polla), “ many things;" that is, many things about Albion, or England.

? Read-a notice of Drayton in Drake's “Shakspeare and his Times;" another, in the third volume of D’Israeli's “Amenities of Literature;" and another, in Sir Egerton Brydgeb's "Imaginative Biography."

For, with their vocal sounds, they sing to pleasant May:
Upon his dulcet pipe the merle doth only play;
When, in the lower brake, the nightingale hard by
In such lamenting strains the joyful liours doth ply,
As though the other birds she to her tunes would draw.
To Philomel, the next the linnet we prefer;
And by that warbling bird the wood-lark place we then,
The red-sparrow, the nope, the red-breast, and the wren.
The yellow pate; which, though she hurt the blooming tsee,
Yet scarce hath any bird a finer pipe than she.
And of these chanting fowls, the goldfinch not belind,
That hath so many sorts descending from her kind.
The tydy from her notes as delicate as they,
The laughing hecco, then the counterfeiting jay;
The softer with the shrill, (some hid among the leaves,
Some in the taller trees, some in the lower greaves)
Thus sing away the morn, until the mounting sun
Through thick exhaled fogs his golden head hath mir,
And through the twisted tops of our close covert creeps
To kiss the gentle shade, this while that sweetly sleeps.


Since there's no help, come, let us kiss and part;

Nay, I have done, you get no more of me;
And I am glad, yea, glad with all my heart

That thus so cleanly I myself can free;
Shake hands for ever, cancel all our vows;

And when we meet at any time again,
Be it not seen in either of our brows

That we one jot of former love retain.
Now at the last gasp of Love's latest breath,

When his pulse failing, passion speechless lies,
When Faith is kneeling by his bed of death,

And Innocence is closing up his eyes,
Now if thou wouldst, when all have given him over,

From death to life thou might'st him yet recover.

This palace standeth in the air,
By necromancy placed there,
That it no tempest needs to fear,

Which way soe er it blow it:
And somewhat southward toward the noon,
Whence lies a way up to the moon,
And thence the Fairy can as soon

Pass to the earth below it.
The walls of spiders' legs are made,
Well morticed and finely laid,
He was the master of his trade

It curiously that builded;
The windows of the eyes of cats,
And for the roof, instead of slats,
Is cover'd with the skins of bats,

With moonshine that are gilded.

-The queen her maids doth call,
And bids them to be ready all,
She would go see her summer hall,

She could no longer tarry.
Her chariot ready straight is made,
Each thing therein is fitting laid,
That she by nothing might be stay'd,

For nought must her be letting:
Four nimble gnats the horses were,
The harnesses of gossamer,
Fly Cranion, her charioteer,

Upon the coach-box getting.
Her chariot of a snail's fine shell,
Which for the colors did excel;
The fair queen Mab becoming well,

So lively was the limning:
The seat the soft wool of the bee,
The cover (gallantly to see)
The wing of a py'd butterflee,

I trow, 'twas simple trimming.
The wheels composed of crickets' bones,
And daintily made for the nonce,
For fear of rattling on the stones,

With thistle-down they shod it:
For all her maidens mueh did fear,
If Oberon had chanc'd to hear,
That Mab his queen shonld have been there,

He would not have abode it. She mounts her chariot with a trice, Nor would she stay for no advice, Until her maids, that were so nice,

To wait on her were fitted, But ran herself away alone; Which when they heard, there was not one But hasted after to be gone,

As she had been diswitted. Hop, and Mop, and Drap so clear, Pip, and Trip, and Skip, that were To Mab their sovereign dear,

Her special maids of honor;
Fib, and Tib, and Pinck, and Pin,
Tick, and Quick, and Jill, and Jin,
Tit, and Nit, and Wap, and Win,

The train that wait upon her.
Upon a grasshopper they got,
And what with amble and with trot,
For hedge nor ditch they spared not,

But after her they hie them.
A cobweb over them they throw,
To shield the wind if it should blow,
Themselves they wisely could bestow,
Lest any should espy them.

From the Nymphidia.

« PreviousContinue »