Poems, &c. written upon several occasions, and to several persons by Edmond Waller.
Waller, Edmund, 1606-1687.
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Of the danger His Majesty (being Prince) escaped in the Road at Saint Andrews.
Now had his Highness bid farewel to Spain,
And reach't the sphere of his own power, the main;
With British bounty in his Ship he Feasts,
Th'Hesperian Princes, his amazed guests;
To find that watry Wilderness exceed
The entertainment of their great Madrid.
Healths to both Kings, attended with the rore
Of Cannons eccho'd from th'affrighted shoar,
With loud resemblance of his Thunder prove
Bacchus the seed of Cloud eompelling Iove.
Page 4 While to his Harp Divine Arion sings
The Loves and Conquests of our Albion Kings.
Of the fourth Edward was his Noble song;
Fierce, Goodly, Valiant, Beautiful and Young:
He rent the Crown from vanquisht Henries head;
Rais'd the white Rose, and trampled on the Red:
Till Love triumphing o're the Victor's pride,
Brought Mars and Warwick to the Conquer'd side;
Neglected Warwick (whose bold hand like fate,
Gives and resumes the Scepter of our State)
Wooes for his Master, and with double shame,
Himself deluded; mocks the Princely Dame,
The Lady Bona; whom just anger burns;
And Forein War with Civil Rage returns.
Ah spare your Sword, where Beauty is to blame;
Love gaveth' Affront, & must repair the same: (eyes
When France shall boast of her, whose conquering
Have made the best of English hearts their prize;
Page 5 Have power to alter the decrees of Fate,
And change again the Counsels of our State.
What the Prophetick Muse intends, alone
To him that feels the secret Wound, is known.
With the sweet sound of this harmonious lay
About the Keel delighted Dolphins play;
Too sure a sign of Seas ensuing rage,
Which must anon this Royal Troop engage:
To whom soft sleep seems more secure and sweet,
Within the Town commanded by our Fleet.
These mighty Peers plac'd in the gilded Barge,
Proud with the burden of so brave a charge:
With painted Oars the Youths begin to sweep
Neptunes smooth face, and cleave the yielding deep,
Which soon becomes the seat of sudden War
Between the Wind and Tide, that fiercely jar.
As when a sort of lusty Shepherds try
Their force at Foot-ball, care of victory
Page 6 Makes them salute so rudely breast to breast.
That their Encounters seem too rough for jest:
They ply their feet, and still the restless Ball
Tost too and fro is urged by them all:
So fares the doubtful Barge'twixt Tide and Winds;
And like effect of their contention finds.
Yet the bold Britains still securely row'd;
Charles and his Virtue was their sacred load:
Than which a greater pledge Heaven could not give,
That the good Boat this Tempest should out-live.
But storms encrease, and now no hope of grace
Among them shines, save in the Princes Face.
The rest resign their courage, skill and sight
To danger, horror, and unwelcome night.
The gentle Vessel, wont with state and pride
On the smooth back of Silver Thames to ride,
Wanders Astonish'd in the angry main;
As Titans Car did, while the golden rein
Page 7 Fill'd the young hand of his advent 'rous Son,
When the whole world an equal hazard run
To this of ours; the light of whose desire
Waves threaten now, as that was skar'd by fire.
Th'impatient Sea grows impotent and raves,
That (night assisting) his impetuous waves
Should find resistance from so light a thing:
These surges ruin, those our safety bring.
Th'oppressed Vessel doth the charge abide;
Only because assail'd on every side:
So Men with rage and passion set on fire,
Trembling for hast, impeach their mad desire.
The pale Iberians had expir'd with fear;
But that their wonder did divert their care;
To see the Prince with danger mov'd no more,
Than with the Pleasures of their Court before.
God-like his courage seem'd, whom nor delight
Could soften, nor the face of Death affright:
Page 8 Next to the power of making Tempests cease,
Was in that storm to have so calm a peace.
Great Maro could no greater Tempest feign;
When the loud Winds usurping on the Main,
For angry Iuno, labour'd to destroy
The hated reliques of confounded Troy.
His bold Aeneas, on like Billows tost,
In a tall Ship, and all his Country lost,
Dissolves with fear; and both his hands upheld,
Proclaims them happy whom the Greeks had quel'd
In Honourable fight: Our Hero set
In a small shallop; fortune in his debt,
So near a hope of Crowns and Scepters, more
Than ever Priam, when he flourish'd, wore;
His Loyns yet full of ungot Princes, all
His Glory in the bud; lets nothing fall
That argues Fear: if any thought annoys
The gallant youth, 'tis Loves untasted joys,
Page 9 And dear remembrance of that futal glance,
For which he lately pawn'd his Heart in France.
Where he had seen a brighter Nymph than she
That sprung out of his present foe, the Sea.
That noble Ardor, more than mortal Fire,
The Conquer'd Ocean could not make expire▪
Nor angry Thetis, raise her waves above
Th'Heroick Princes Courage, or his Love;
Twas Indignation, and not Fear he felt,
The shrine should perish, where that Image dwelt.
Ah Love forbid! the Noblest of thy Train
Should not survive to let her know his pain:
Who nor his Peril minding, nor his Flame,
Is entertain'd with some less serious Game
Among the bright Nymphs of the Gallique Court;
All highly born, obsequious to her sport:
They Roses seem, which in their early pride,
But half reveal, and half their Beauties hide;
Page 10 She the glad morning, which her beams does throw,
Upon their smiling leaves, and gilds them so:
Like bright Aurora, whose re•ulgent Ray
Foretells the fervor of ensuing day;
And warns the Shepherd with his Flocks retreat
To lea•ie shadows, from the threatned heat.
From Cupids strings, of many shafts that fled,
Wing'd with those plumes which noble fame had shed,
As through the wondring world she flew, and told
Of his Adventures haughty, brave and bold,
Some had already touch'd the Royal Maid;
But love's first summons seldom are obey'd:
Light was the Wound; the Prince's care unknown,
She might not, would not yet reveal her own.
His glorious name had so possest her ears,
That with delight those antique tales she hears
Of Iason, Theseus, and such Worthies old,
As with his Story best resemblance hold.
Page 11 And now she views, as on the wall it hung,
What old Musaus so Divinely sung:
Which Art with life and love did so inspire,
That she discerns, and favours that desire,
Which there provokes th'advent'rous youth to swim,
And in Leanders danger pities him:
Whose not new love alone, but fortune seeks
To frame his story like that amorous Greeks.
For from the Stern of some good Ship appears
A friendly light, which moderates their fears:
New courage from reviving hope they take,
And climbing o're the waves, that Taper make;
On which the hope of all their Lives depends;
As his on that fair Hero's hand extends.
The Ship at anchor like a fixed Rock
Breaks the proud Billows, which her large sides knock;
Whose rage restrained foaming higher swells,
And from her Port the weary Barge repels;
Page 12 Threatening to make her, forced out again,
Repeat the dangers of the troubled main.
Twice was the Cable hurl'd in vain; the fates
Would not be moved for our Sister States:
For England is the third successfull throw,
And then the Genius of that Land they know:
Whose Prince must be (as their own Books devise)
Lord of the Scene, where now his danger lies.
Well sung the Roman Bard; all human things
Of dearest value hang on slender strings.
O see the then sole hope, and in design
Of Heaven our joy, supported by a line:
Which for that instant was Heaven's care above,
The chain that's fixed to the Throne of Iove;
On which the fabrick of our World depends;
One Link dissolv'd, the whole Creation ends.