Sir William Alexander

II: Some Verses

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Written shortly thereafter by reason of an inundation of Douen, a water neere vnto the Authors house, wherevpon his Maiestie was sometimes wont to Hawke.


What wonder though my melancholious muse,
Whose generous course some lucklesse starre controules:
Her bold attempts to prosecute refuse,
And would faine burie my abortiue scroules.
To what perfection can my lines be rais'd,
Whilst many a crosse would quench my kindling fires:
Lo for Parnassus by the poets prais'd,
Some sauage mountaines shadow my retires.
No Helicon her treasure here vnlockes,
Of all the sacred band the chiefe refuge:
But dangerous Douen rumbling through the rockes,
Would scorne the raine-bowe with a new deluge.
As Tiber, mindefull of his olde renowne,
Augments his floodes to waile the faire chang'd place;
And greeu'd to glide through that degener'd towne,
Toyles with his depthes to couer their disgrace.
So doth my Douen rage, greeu'd in like sort,
While as his wonted honour comes to minde:
To that great Prince whilst he afforded sport,
To whom his Trident Neptune hath resign'd.
And as the want of waters and of swaines,
Had but begotten to his bankes neglect:
He striues t'encroch vpon the bordering plaines,
Againe by greatnesse to procure respect.

Thus all the creatures of this orphand boundes,
In their own kindes moou'd with the common crosse:
With many a monstrous forme all forme confoundes,
To make vs mourne more feelingly our losse.
We must our breastes to baser thoughts inure,
Since we want all that did aduaunce our name:
For in a corner of the world obscure,
We rest vngrac'd without the boundes of fame.
And since our Sunne shines in another part,
Liue like th'Antipodes depriu'd of light:
Whilst those to whom his beames he doth impart,
Begin their day whilst we begin our night.
This hath discourag'd my high-bended minde,
And still in doale my drouping Muse arrayes:
Which if my Phœbus once vpon me shin'd,
Might raise her flight to build amidst his rayes.

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Sir William Alexander