Poetical recreations consisting of original poems, songs, odes, &c. with several new translations : in two parts
Barker, Jane.
Page  259

THE PENITENT.

I.
BY Heav'n! 'tis scarce ten days ago,
Since to my self I made a Vow,
That I wou'd never have to do
With Duserastes more;
Till Wine, and Love, and Ease complying,
Bore down before 'em all denying,
For having his Perfections, told me,
Made me break the Oath I swore;
Threw me head-long to his Arms,
Where tasting of his usual charms,
No Resolution can with-hold me.
Now, who but Duserastes in my eye;
'Tis by his smiles I live, and by his frowns I dye.
II.
Your Sunny Face, through Cloudy Frowns, in vain
Wou'd make my Gazing Eyes abstain,
For I as soon can cease to be,
As cease to Love, and gaze on thee;
Here cou'd I take up mine Eternitie.
Page  260As well one may
Touch flaming Coals, or with a Serpent play,
And yet receive no harm;
As look on you unmoved by your Charms.
For my part, I am forc'd to lay down Arms;
Although I'm fain
To be content with nothing but disdain.
And since those things are cheap, we easily obtain,
I am content a while to live upon despair,
Iust as Chamelions do on Air.
III.
I play and dally on Hells brink,
Till I perceive my self begin to sink,
Or scorch my self too near so great a fire,
And so am forced to retire.
Anon forgetfull of my former burn,
I must again, I must again return:
So do's the little Gnat, by Night,
Fly round, and round, the Candles light,
Untill its busie daring Wing
Too near such heat begins to singe;
Yet still unmindfull of the smart,
She must, she will repeat her former sport.
Page  261IV.
Hence, hence, Heroick Muse, adieu,
For I must take my leave of you;
Love, that usurps the Rule of my Poetick Vein,
Forbids Calliope's Heroick strain;
Charges me nothing to endite,
Concerning this or t'other fight,
Nor of the Scythian, or the Parthian War to write,
Unless to beautifie my Poetry,
Those stories to my Love I fitly wou'd apply.
And now methinks I feign
My self an honest faithfull Scythian,
And he a perfidious flying Parthian,
Whose turned Dart
Strikes his Pursuer swiftly to the Heart:
So the more eager Phoebus follow'd on,
The swifter Daphne did his Presence shun;
So much the more encreas'd his Passion higher,
As the chast little Virgin, she grew shier.
I ask not mutual Love in equal weight,
But only give me leave to love thee free from hate.