ON THE DEATH OF MY Much Honoured Friend, Colonel Richard Lovelace.
AN ELEGIE.

MEthinks when Kings, Prophets, and Poets dye,
We should not bid men weep, nor ask them why,
But the great loss should by instinct impaire
The Nations like a pestilentiall ayre,
And in a moment Men should feele the Cramp,
Of griefe like persons poyson'd with a damp;
All things in nature should their death deplore,
And the Sun look less lovely then before,
The fixed Starrs should change their constant spaces,
And Comets cast abroad their flagrant faces,
Yet still we see Princes and Poets fall
Without their proper pomp of Funerall,
Men look about as if they nere had known
The Poets Lawrell, or the Princes Crown;
LOVELACE hath long been dead, and we can be
Oblig'd to no man for an Eligie.
Are you all turn'd to silence, or did he
Retain the only sap of Poetrie,
That kept all branches living, must his fall
Set an eternall Period upon all:
So when a Spring-tide doth begin to fly,
From the green shoar, each neighbouring Creek growes dry.
But why do I so pettishly detract,
An age that is so perfect, so exact,
In all things excellent, it is no Fame,
Or glory to deceased Lovelace Name,
For he is weak in wit who doth deprave
Anothers worth to make his own seem brave,
And this was not his aime, nor is it mine,
I now conceive the scope of their design,
Which is with one consent to bring, and burn
Contributary Incense on his Vrne,
Where each Mans Love and Fancy shall be try'd,
As when great Johnson, or brave Shakespeare dy'd.
Wits must unite, for Ignorance we see,
Hath got a great train of Artillerie,
Yet neither shall, nor can it blast the Fame
And honour of deceased LOVELACE Name,
Whose own LUCASTA can support his cred [...]t,
Amongst all such who knowingly have read it,
But who that Praise can by desert discusse
Due to those Poems that are Posthumous,
And if the last conceptions are the best,
Those by degrees do much transcend the rest,
So full, so fluent, that they richly suite
With Orpheus Lyre, or with Anacreons Lute,
And he shall melt his wings that shall aspire
To reach a Fancy or one accent higher.
Holland and France have known his nobler parts,
And found him excellent in Arms, and Arts,
To sum up all, few Men of Fame but know
He was Tam Marti, quam Mercurio.
Samuel Holland.

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