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LOVELACE, Richard



To Lucasta. Like to the Sentinel Stars


I.

Like to the sent'nel stars, I watch all night;

For still the grand round of your light

And glorious breast

Awake in me an east:

Nor will my rolling eyes ere know a west.


II.

Now on my down I'm toss'd as on a wave,

And my repose is made my grave;

Fluttering I lie,

Do beat myself and die,

But for a resurrection from your eye.


III.

Ah, my fair murdress! dost thou cruelly heal

With various pains to make me well?

Then let me be

Thy cut anatomie,

And in each mangled part my heart you'll see.



To Lucasta, I Laugh and Sing


I.

I laugh and sing, but cannot tell

Whether the folly on’t sounds well;

But then I groan,

Methinks, in tune;

Whilst grief, despair and fear dance to the air

Of my despised prayer.


II.

A pretty antick love does this,

Then strikes a galliard with a kiss;

As in the end

The chords they rend;

So you but with a touch from your fair hand

Turn all to saraband.



Lucasta paying her Obsequies to the Chast Memory of my Dearest Cosin Mrs. Bowes Barne(s)


I.

See! what an undisturbed tear

She weeps for her last sleep;

But, viewing her, straight wak'd a Star,

She weeps that she did weep.


II.

Grief ne're before did tyrannize

On th' honour of that brow,

And at the wheels of her brave eyes

Was captive led til now.


III.

Thus, for a saints apostasy

The unimagin'd woes

And sorrows of the Hierarchy

None but an angel knows.


IV.

Thus, for lost souls recovery

The clapping of all wings

And triumphs of this victory

None but an angel sings.


V.

So none but she knows to bemoan

This equal virgins fate,

None but LUCASTA can her crown

Of glory celebrate.


VI.

Then dart on me (CHAST LIGHT) one ray,

By which I may discry

Thy joy clear through this cloudy day

To dress my sorrow by.



To Lucasta Going to the Wars


TELL me not (Sweet) I am unkind,

That from the Nunnerie

Of thy chaste breast, and quiet mind,

To War and Arms I fly.


True; a new Mistresse now I chase,

The first Foe in the Field;

And with a stronger Faith embrace

A Sword, a Horse, a Shield.


Yet this Inconstancy is such,

As you too shall adore;

I could not love thee (Deare) so much,

Lov'd I not Honour more.



To Althea From Prison


When love with unconfined wings

Hovers within my gates;

And my divine Althea brings

To whisper at the grates;

When I lie tangled in her hair,

And fetter’d to her eye,

The birds, that wanton in the air,

Know no such liberty.


When flowing cups run swiftly round

With no allaying Thames,

Our carelesse heads with roses bound,

Our hearts with loyal flames;

When thirsty grief in wine we steep,

When healths and draughts go free,

Fishes, that tipple in the deep,

Know no such liberty.


When like committed linnets, I

With shriller throat shall sing

The sweetnes, mercy, majesty,

And glories of my King.

When I shall voice aloud, how good

He is, how great should be,

Enlarged winds, that curle the flood,

Know no such liberty.


Stone walls doe not a prison make,

Nor iron bars a cage;

Minds innocent and quiet take

That for an hermitage;

If I have freedom in my love,

And in my soul am free,

Angels alone that sore above

Enjoy such liberty.



The Scrutiny


Why should you swear I am forsworn,

Since thine I vowed to be?

Lady, it is already morn,

And 'twas last night I swore to thee

That fond impossibility.


Have I not loved thee much and long,

A tedious twelve hours' space?

I must all other beauties wrong,

And rob thee of a new embrace,

Could I still dote upon thy face.


Not but all joy in thy brown hair

By others may be found; -

But I must search the black and fair,

Like skilful mineralists that sound

For treasure in unploughed-up ground.


Then if, when I have loved my round,

Thou prov'st the pleasant she,

With spoils of meaner beauties crowned

I laden will return to thee,

Ev'n sated with variety.