Katherine Philips (1631 - 1664 / London)
In Memory of F.P.
If I could ever write a lasting verse,
It should be laid, deare Sainte, upon thy herse.
But Sorrow is no muse, and doth confesse
That it least can what most it would expresse.
Yet, that I may some bounds to griefe allow,
I'le try if I can weepe in numbers now.
Ah beauteous blossom! too untimely dead!
Whither, ah whither is thy sweetness fled?
Where are the charmes that allwayes did arise
From the prevailing languadge [sic] of thine eyes?
Where is thy modest aire and lovely meen,
And all the wonders that in these were seen?
Alas! in vaine! In vaine on three I rave;
There is no pitty in the stupid grave . . .
Never, ah never let glad parents guesse
At one remove of future happinesse,
But reckon children 'mong those passing joys,
Which one hour gives, and the next hour destroyes.
Alas! we were secure of our content,
But find too late that it was onely lent,
To be a mirrour wherein we might see
How fraile we are, how innocent should be.
But if to thy blest soule my griefe appeares,
Forgive and pitty these injurious teares;
Impute them to affection's sad excesse,
Which will not yeild to nature's tendernesse,
Since 'twas through dearest tyes and highest trust
Continu'd from thy cradle to thy dust;
And so rewarded and confirm'd by thine,
(wo is me!) I thought thee too much mine.
But I'le resigne, and follow thee as fast
As my unhappy minutes will make hast.
Till when, the fresh remembrances of thee
Shall be my emblem of mortalitie.
For such a loss as thine, bright soule, is not
Ever to be repaired, or forgot.
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