William Drummond, fully Sir William Drummond of Hawthornden
O fate! Conspir'd to pour your worst on me, o rigorous rigour, which doth all confound! With cruel hands ye have cut down the tree, and fruit and flower dispersed on the ground. A little space of earth my love doth bound; that beauty which did raise it to the sky, turn'd in neglected dust, now low doth lie, deaf to my plaints, and senseless of my wound. Ah! Did i live for this? Ah! Did I love? For this and was it she did so excel? That ere she well life's sweet-sour joys did prove, she should, too dear a guest, with horror dwell? Weak influence of heaven! What fair ye frame, falls in the prime, and passeth like a dream. O woful life! Life? No, but living death, frail boat of crystal in a rocky sea, a sport expos'd to fortune's stormy breath, which kept with pain, with terror doth decay: the false delights, true woes thou dost bequeath, mine all-appalled mind do so affray, that i those envy who are laid in earth, and pity them that run thy dreadful way. When did mine eyes behold one cheerful morn? When had my tossed soul one night of rest? When did not hateful stars my projects scorn? O! Now I find for mortals what is best; even, sith our voyage shameful is, and short, soon to strike sail, and perish in the port.
What doth it serve to see sun's burning face, and skies enamelled with both the indies' gold? Or moon at night in jetty chariot roll'd, and all the glory of that starry place?
God never had a church but there, men say, the devil a chapel hath raised by some wyles. I doubted of this saw, till on a day I westward spied great edinburgh’s saint gyles.
O sacred blush, impurpling cheeks' pure skies with crimson wings which spread thee like the morn; o bashful look, sent from those shining eyes, which, though cast down on earth, couldst heaven adorn; o tongue, in which most luscious nectar lies, that can at once both bless and make forlorn; dear coral lip, which beauty beautifies, that trembling stood ere that her words were born; and you her words, words, no, but golden chains, which did captive mine ears, ensnare my soul, wise image of her mind, mind that contains a power, all power of senses to control; ye all from love dissuade so sweetly me, that i love more, if more my love could be.
What sweet delight a quiet life affords.
He lives who dies to win a lasting name.
Of mortal glory, o soon darken'd ray! O posting joys of man, more swift than wind! O fond desires, which wing'd with fancies stray! O trait'rous hopes, which do our judgments blind! Lo! In a flash that light is gone away, which dazzle did each eye, delight each mind, and with that sun, from whence it came, combin'd, now makes more radiant heaven's eternal day. Let beauty now bedew her cheeks with tears, let widow'd music only roar and plain; poor virtue, get thee wings, and mount the spheres, and let thine only name on earth remain. Death hath thy temple raz'd, love's empire foil'd, the world of honour, worth, and sweetness spoil'd. Those eyes, those sparkling sapphires of delight, which thousand thousand hearts did set on fire, which made that eye of heaven that brings the light, oft jealous, stay amaz'd them to admire; that living snow, those crimson roses bright, those pearls, those rubies, which did breed desire, those locks of gold, that purple fair of tyre, are wrapt, ay me! Up in eternal night. What hast thou more to vaunt of, wretched world, sith she, who cursed thee made blest, is gone? Thine ever-burning lamps, rounds ever whirl'd, can unto thee not model such a one: for if they would such beauty bring on earth, they should be forc'd again to make her breath.
Here is the pleasant place, and nothing wanted is, save she, alas!
Of this fair volume which we world do name if we the sheets and leaves could turn with care, of him who it corrects, and did it frame, we clear might read the art and wisdom rare.
I study myself more than any other subject; it is my metaphysic, and my physic.
Property has its duties as well as its rights.
In mind's pure glass when I myself behold, and vively see how my best days are spent, what clouds of care above my head are roll'd, what coming harms which I cannot prevent: my begun course i, wearied, do repent, and would embrace what reason oft hath told; but scarce thus think i, when love hath controll'd all the best reasons reason could invent. Though sure I know my labour's end is grief, the more I strive that I the more shall pine, that only death can be my last relief: yet when I think upon that face divine, like one with arrow shot in laughter's place, Malgré my heart, I joy in my disgrace.
Put a bridle on thy tongue; set a guard before thy lips, lest the words of thine own mouth destroy thy peace... On much speaking cometh repentance, but in silence is safety.
Iron sharpens iron; scholar, the scholar.
Sleep, silence's child, sweet father of soft rest, prince whose approach peace to all mortals brings indifferent host to shepherds and kings; sole comforter to minds with grief opprest
The Graces naked danced about the place,
The winds and trees amazed
With silence on her gazed,
The flowers did smile, like those upon her face;
And as their aspen stalks those fingers band,
That she might read my case,
A hyacinth I wished me in her hand.
No, no; if the fairest features of the landscape are to
be named after men, let them be the noblest and worthiest men
alone. Let our lakes receive as true names at least as the Icarian
Sea, where “still the shore” a “brave attempt resounds.