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Dr. JOHN DONNE,
Dean of ST. PAUL's,
Quid vetat et nofmet Lucili fcripta legentes Quaerere, num illius, num rerum dura negarit Verficulos natura magis factos, et euntes Mollius?
IR; though (I thank God for it) I do hate
In all ill things fo excellently beft,
That hate towards them, breeds pity towards the reft. Though Poetry, indeed, be fuch a fin,
As, I think, that brings dearth and Spaniards in : Though like the peftilence, and old-fashion❜d love, Ridlingly it catch men, and doth remove
Never, till it be ftarv'd out; yet their ftate
Is poor, difarm'd, like Papifts, not worth hate.
One (like a wretch, which at barre judg'd as dead, Yet prompts him which stands next, and cannot read, And faves his life) gives Idiot Actors means, (Starving himself) to live by's labour'd scenes. As in fome Organs, Puppits dance above
And bellows pant bellow, which them do meve.
One would move love by rythmes; but witchcraft's charms
Bring not now their old fears, nor their old harms;
ES; thank my ftars! as early as I knew
That all befide, one pities, not abhors;
It brought (no doubt) th' Excise and Army in:
Catch'd like the Plague, or Love, the Lord knows
But that the cure is ftarving, all allow.
Yet like the Papift's, is the Poet's state,
Poor and difarm'd, and hardly worth your hate!
One fings the Fair; but fongs no longer move; No rat is rhym'd to death, nor maid to love:
Rams, and flings now are filly battery,
Pistolets are the best artillery.
And they who write to Lords, rewards to get,
But he is worft, who beggarly doth chaw
The meat was mine, the excrement's his own.
T'out-drink the fea, t'out-fwear the Letanie,
VER. 44. In what Commandment's large contents they dwell. The Original is more humourous,
In what Commandment's large receit they dwell.
As if the Ten Commandments were fo wide, as to ftand ready
In love's, in nature's fpite, the fiege they hold,
Thefe write to Lords, fome mean reward to get, As needy beggars fing at doors for meat. Those write because all write, and fo have ftill Excufe for writing, and for writing ill.
Wretched indeed! but far more wretched yet Is he who makes his meal on others wit: 'Tis chang'd, no doubt, from what it was before, His rank digeftion makes it wit no more: Sense, paft thro' him, no longer is the fame; For food digested takes another name.
I pafs o'er all thofe Confeffors and Martyrs,
A&t fins which Prifca's Confeffor scarce hears.
to receive every thing within them, that either the Lara of Nature or the Gospel commands. A just ridicule on thofe practical Commentators, as they are called, who include all moral and religious Duties within thein.