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The Exequy Analysis

Author: Poetry of Henry King Type: Poetry Views: 495

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1Accept, thou shrine of my dead saint,

2Instead of dirges, this complaint;

3And for sweet flow'rs to crown thy hearse,

4From thy griev'd friend, whom thou might'st see

5Quite melted into tears for thee.

6Dear loss! since thy untimely fate

7My task hath been to meditate

8On thee, on thee; thou art the book,

9The library whereon I look,

10Though almost blind. For thee (lov'd clay)

11I languish out, not live, the day,

12Using no other exercise

13But what I practise with mine eyes;

14By which wet glasses I find out

15How lazily time creeps about

16To one that mourns; this, only this,

17My exercise and bus'ness is.

18So I compute the weary hours

19With sighs dissolved into showers.

20Nor wonder if my time go thus

21Backward and most preposterous;

22Thou hast benighted me; thy set

23This eve of blackness did beget,

24Who wast my day (though overcast

25Before thou hadst thy noon-tide past)

26And I remember must in tears,

27Thou scarce hadst seen so many years

28As day tells hours. By thy clear sun

29My love and fortune first did run;

30But thou wilt never more appear

31Folded within my hemisphere,

32Since both thy light and mot{"i}on

33Like a fled star is fall'n and gone;

34And 'twixt me and my soul's dear wish

35An earth now interposed is,

36Which such a strange eclipse doth make

37As ne'er was read in almanac.

38I could allow thee for a time

39To darken me and my sad clime;

40Were it a month, a year, or ten,

41I would thy exile live till then,

42And all that space my mirth adjourn,

43So thou wouldst promise to return,

44And putting off thy ashy shroud,

45At length disperse this sorrow's cloud.

46But woe is me! the longest date

47Too narrow is to calculate

48These empty hopes; never shall I

49Be so much blest as to descry

50A glimpse of thee, till that day come

51Which shall the earth to cinders doom,

52And a fierce fever must calcine

53The body of this world like thine,

54(My little world!). That fit of fire

55Once off, our bodies shall aspire

56To our souls' bliss; then we shall rise

57And view ourselves with clearer eyes

58In that calm region where no night

59Can hide us from each other's sight.

60Meantime, thou hast her, earth; much good

61May my harm do thee. Since it stood

62With heaven's will I might not call

63Her longer mine, I give thee all

64My short-liv'd right and interest

65In her whom living I lov'd best;

66With a most free and bounteous grief,

67I give thee what I could not keep.

68Be kind to her, and prithee look

69Thou write into thy doomsday book

70Each parcel of this rarity

71Which in thy casket shrin'd doth lie.

72See that thou make thy reck'ning straight,

73And yield her back again by weight;

74For thou must audit on thy trust

75Each grain and atom of this dust,

76As thou wilt answer Him that lent,

77Not gave thee, my dear monument.

78So close the ground, and 'bout her shade

79Black curtains draw, my bride is laid.

80Sleep on my love in thy cold bed

81Never to be disquieted!

82My last good-night! Thou wilt not wake

83Till I thy fate shall overtake;

84Till age, or grief, or sickness must

85Marry my body to that dust

86It so much loves, and fill the room

87My heart keeps empty in thy tomb.

88Stay for me there, I will not fail

89To meet thee in that hollow vale.

90And think not much of my delay;

91I am already on the way,

92And follow thee with all the speed

93Desire can make, or sorrows breed.

94Each minute is a short degree,

95And ev'ry hour a step towards thee.

96At night when I betake to rest,

97Next morn I rise nearer my west

98Of life, almost by eight hours' sail,

99Than when sleep breath'd his drowsy gale.

100Thus from the sun my bottom steers,

101And my day's compass downward bears;

102Nor labour I to stem the tide

103Through which to thee I swiftly glide.

104'Tis true, with shame and grief I yield,

105Thou like the van first took'st the field,

106And gotten hath the victory

107In thus adventuring to die

108Before me, whose more years might crave

109A just precedence in the grave.

110But hark! my pulse like a soft drum

111Beats my approach, tells thee I come;

112And slow howe'er my marches be,

113I shall at last sit down by thee.

114The thought of this bids me go on,

115And wait my dissolut{"i}on

116With hope and comfort. Dear (forgive

117The crime) I am content to live

118Divided, with but half a heart,

119Till we shall meet and never part.


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