To a Vertuous and Judicious Lady, who (for the exercise of her Devotion) built a Closet, wherein to secure the most Sacred Booke of COMMON-PRAYER, from the view and violence of the Enemies thereof, the Sectaries and Schismatiques of this Kingdome.

SInce it hath pleas'd our wise and new-born State
The Common-Prayer-Book t'excommunicate:
To turne it out of all, as if it were
Some grand Malignant, or some Cavaliere:
Since in our Churches 't is by them forbid
To say such Prayers, as our Fathers did:
So that Gods House must now be call'd no more
The House of Prayer, so ever call'd before:
As if those Christians were resolv'd to use
That House, as bad, as ever did the Jews:
Since that of Christ, may now of Prayer be said,
It wants a place whereon to lay its head.
I cannot choose but think, it was your care,
To build your Closet for distressed PRAYER;
VVhich here in mourning clad, presents it selfe,
Begging some little corner on your shelfe:
For since 't is banish'd from all publique view,
There be none dare it entertain, but you.
How times and men are chang'd! who would have thought
T'have seen the Service-Book thus set at naught?
A Book worth Gold, if rightly understood;
Compos'd by Martyrs, sealed with their blood.
Once burnt by Papists, meerly for this cause,
It was repugnant to their Popish Lawes.
Now by our Zelots 't is condemn'd to die,
Because (forsooth) 't is full of Popery.
And thus we see the Golden meane defy'd,
And how ('twixt two extreames) 't is crucify'd.
ΒΆ But 't is no matter, we see stranger things,
Kings must be Subjects now, and Subjects, Kings.
The meaner sort of men have all the power;
The upper end is now beneath the lower:
The head below the feet; they'll weare the Crown:
who would not think the world's turn'd upside down?
Learning must now give place to Ignorance,
So must a Statute to an Ordinance;
Religion to Prophanenesse, and vain-glory;
The Common-Prayer-Book to the Directory.
All things are out of order, and I feare,
Are like to be, till we are as we were:
Till Bishops doe returne to end the stir
Twixt th'Independent and the Presbyter.
Till Kings be Kings, and till we (wished) see
The Church enjoy her ancient Lyturgie.
Till Loyalty be had in more regard:
And till Rebellion hath its just reward.
And that these things may be, we'll not despaire:
All this, and more, may be obtain'd by Prayer.

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