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The better part with Mary and with Ruth
Chosen thou hast, and they that overween,
And at thy growing virtues fret their spleen.
No anger find in thee, but pity and ruth.
Thy care is fixed, and zealously attends
To fill thy odorous Lamp with deeds of light.
And Hope that reaps not shame; therefore be sure,
Thou, when the Bridegroom with his feastful friends
Passes to bliss at the mid hour of night,
Hast gained thy entrance, Virgin wise and pure.

TO THE LADY MARGARET LEY

(1644-5)
DAUGHTER to that good Earl, once President

Of England's Council and her Treasury,
Who lived in both unstained with gold or fee,

And left them both, more in himself content,
Till the sad breaking of that Parliament

Broke him, as that dishonest victory
At Chæronea, fatal to liberty,
Killed with report that old man eloquent,
Though later born than to have known the days
Wherein your father flourished, yet by you,

Madam, methinks I see him living yet:
So well your words his noble virtues praise

That all both judge you to relate them true
And to possess them, honoured Margaret.

ON THE DETRACTION WHICH FOLLOWED UPON
MY WRITING CERTAIN TREATISES

(1645-6)
A BOOK was writ of late called Tetrachordon,
And woven close, both matter, form, and style;
The subject new: it walked the town a while,
Numbering good intellects; now seldom pored on.
Cries the stall-reader, “ Bless us! what a word on

A title-page is this !”; and some in file
Stand spelling false, while one might walk to Mile-

End Green. Why, is it harder, sirs, than Gordon, Colkitto, or Macdonnel, or Galasp?

Those rugged names to our like mouths grow sleek

That would have made Quintilian stare and gasp. Thy age, like ours, O soul of Sir John Cheek,

Hated not learning worse than toad or asp,
When thou taught'st Cambridge and King Edward

Greek.

ON THE SAME

(1645-6)
I DID but prompt the age to quit their clogs

By the known rules of ancient liberty,
When straight a barbarous noise environs me

Of owls and cuckoos, asses, apes, and dogs;
As when those hinds that were transformed to frogs
Railed at Latona's twin-born progeny,
Which after held the Sun and Moon in fee.

But this is got by casting pearl to hogs,
That bawl for freedom in their senseless mood,

And still revolt when Truth would set them free.

Licence they mean when they cry Liberty;
For who loves that must first be wise and good:

But from that mark how far they rove we see,
For all this waste of wealth and loss of blood.

ON THE NEW FORCERS OF CONSCIENCE
UNDER THE LONG PARLIAMENT

(1646) BECAUSE you have thrown off your Prelate Lord,

And with stiff vows renounced his Liturgy,
To seize the widowed whore Plurality,
From them whose sin ye envied, not abhorred,
Dare ye for this adjure the civil sword

To force our consciences that Christ set free,
And ride us with a Classic Hierarchy,

Taught ye by mere A. S. and Rutherford ?
Men whose life, learning, faith, and pure intent,

Would have been held in high esteem with Paul

Must now be named and printed heretics
By shallow Edwards and Scotch What-d'ye-call!

But we do hope to find out all your tricks,
Your plots and packing, worse than those of Trent,

That so the Parliament
May with their wholesome and preventive shears
Clip your phylacteries, though baulk your ears,

And succour our just fears,
When they shall read this clearly in your charge:
New Presbyter is but old Priest writ large.

TO MR. H. LAWES ON HIS AIRS

(1646) HARRY, whose tuneful and well-measured song

First taught our English music how to span Words with just note and accent, not to scan With Midas' ears, committing short and long, Thy worth and skill exempts thee from the throng, With praise enough for Envy to look wan; To after age thou shalt be writ the man That with smooth air couldst humour best our

tongue. Thou honour'st Verse, and Verse must lend her wing

To honour thee, the priest of Phæbus' quire,

That tunest their happiest lines in hymn or story. Dante shall give Fame leave to set thee higher

Than his Casella, whom he wooed to sing,
Met in the milder shades of Purgatory.

ON THE RELIGIOUS MEMORY OF MRS. CATH-
ERINE THOMSON, MY CHRISTIAN FRIEND,
DECEASED DEC. 16, 1646

(1646) When Faith and Love, which parted from thee never,

Had ripened thy just soul to dwell with God,
Meekly thou didst resign this earthly load

Of death, called life, which us from life doth sever.
Thy works, and alms, and all thy good endeavour,
Stayed not behind, nor in the grave were trod;
But, as Faith pointed with her golden rod,

Followed thee up to joy and bliss for ever..
Love led them on; and Faith, who knew them best

Thy handmaids, clad them o'er with purple beams
And azure wings, that up they few so drest,
And speak the truth of thee on glorious themes
Before the Judge; who henceforth bid thee rest,
And drink thy fill of pure immortal streams.

ON THE LORD GENERAL FAIRFAX AT THE

SIEGE OF COLCHESTER

(1648) Fairfax, whose name in arms through Europe rings,

Filling each mouth with envy or with praise,
And all her jealous monarchs with amaze,

And rumours loud that daunt remotest kings,
Thy firm unshaken virtue ever brings

Victory home, though new rebellions raise
Their Hydra heads, and the false North displays
Her broken league to imp their serpent wings.
O yet a nobler task awaits thy hand

(For what can war but endless war still breed?)

Till truth and right from violence be freed,
· And public faith cleared from the shameful brand

Of public fraud. In vain doth Valour bleed,
While Avarice and Rapine share the land.

TO THE LORD GENERAL CROMWELL, ON THE PROPOSALS OF CERTAIN MINISTERS AT THE COMMITTEE FOR THE PROPAGATION OF THE GOSPEL

(1652)
CROMWELL, our chief of men, who through a cloud

Not of war only, but detractions rude,
Guided by faith and matchless fortitude,

To peace and truth thy glorious way hast ploughed, And on the neck of crowned Fortune proud

Hast reared. God's trophies, and his work pursued, While Darwen stream, with blood of Scots imbrued,

And Dunbar field, resounds thy praises loud,
And Worcester's laureate wreath: yet much remains

To conquer still; Peace hath her victories
No less renowned than War: new foes arise,
Threatening to bind our souls with secular chains.

Help us to save free conscience from the paw
Of hireling wolves, whose Gospel is their maw.

TO SIR HENRY VANE THE YOUNGER

(1652)
VANE, young in years, but in sage counsel old,

Than whom a better senator ne'er held
The helm of Rome, when gowns, not armis, repelled

The fierce Epirot and the African bold,
Whether to settle peace, or to unfold

The drift of hollow states hard to be spelled;
Then to advise how war may best, upheld,
Move by her two main nerves, iron and gold,
In all her equipage; besides, to know

Both spiritual power and civil, what each means,
What severs each, thou hast learned, which few

have done.
The bounds of either sword to thee we owe:

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