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The brags of life are but a nine days' wonder:
Only thy Chronicle is lost and yet
Than to have hellish moths still gnaw and fret
When all thy deeds, whose brunt thou feel'st alone, Are chaw'd by others' pens and tongue,
And as their wit is, their digestion,
Thy nourish'd fame is weak or strong.
Then cease discoursing, soul, till thine own ground;
He that by seeking hath himself once found,
My God, a verse is not a crown ;
It cannot vault, or dance, or play;
It is no office, art, or news;
I SAW the Virtues sitting hand in hand
Humility, who sat the lowest there
To execute their call,
When by the beasts the presents tender'd were,
Gave them about to all.
The angry Lion did present his paw,
Which by consent was given to Mansuetude.
The jealous Turkey brought his coral chain,
That went to Temperance.
On Justice was bestow'd the Fox's brain,
Kill'd in the way by chance.
At length the Crow, bringing the Peacock's plume
Till they fell out;
which when the beasts espied, They leapt upon the throne;
And if the Fox had lived to rule their side,
They had deposed each one.
Humility, who held the plume, at this
Did weep so fast, that the tears trickling down
For which ye wrangle, made them turn their frown
They drive them soon away;
And then amerced them, double gifts to bring
LORD, in my silence how do I despise
Is styled honour, riches, or fair eyes;
I surname them gilded clay,
In all, I think my foot doth ever tread
But when I view abroad both Regiments,
The world's, and thine;
Thine clad with simpleness, and sad events;
Full of glory and gay weeds,
Brave language, braver deeds:
That which was dust before, doth quickly rise, And prick mine eyes.
O brook not this, lest if what even now
My foot did tread,
Affront those joys, wherewith thou didst endow, And long since wed
My poor soul, e'en sick of love ; It may a Babel prove, Commodious to conquer heaven and thee Planted in me.
WHO is the honest man?
He that doth still and strongly good pursue,
Whose honesty is not
So loose or easy, that a ruffling wind
Who, when great trials come,
Nor seeks, nor shuns them; but doth calmly stay,
All being brought into a sum,
Whom none can work or woo,
To use in any thing a trick or sleight;
His words and works and fashion too
All of a piece, and all are clear and straight.
Who never melts or thaws
At close temptations: when the day is done,
And is their virtue; Virtue is his Sun.
Who, when he is to treat
With sick folks, women, those whom passions sway, Allows for that, and keeps his constant way: Whom others' faults do not defeat;
But though men fail him, yet his part doth play.
Whom nothing can procure,
When the wide world runs bias, from his will
My heart did heave, and there came forth, O God!
Making a sceptre of the rod :
Hadst thou not had thy part,
Sure the unruly sigh had broke my heart.
But since thy breath gave me both life and shape,
The sigh then only is
A gale to bring me sooner to my bliss.