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Thy vows, and if thou break them weep.
Weep for thy broken vows, and vow again :
Vows made with tears cannot be still in vain.

Then once again
I vow to mend my ways,

Lord, fay, Amen,
And thine be all the praise.


H! How my mind

Is gravellid!

Not a thought,
That I can find,

But ravell'd

All to nought.
Short ends of threads,

And narrow shreds

Of lifts,
Knots, snarled ruffs,

Loose broken tufts

Of twists,
Are my torn meditations ragged clothing,
Which wound, and woven shape a suit for nothing;
One while I think, and then I am in pain
To think how to unthink that thought again.
How can my soul

But familh

With this food ?
Pleasures full bowl

Tastes ramish,

Taints the blood.
Profit picks bonës,

And chews on itones

That choak:
Honour climbs hills,



Fats not but fills

With smoak.
And whilft my thoughts are greedy upon thesc,
They pass by pearls, and toop to pick up peas,
Such wash and draff is fit for none but fwine : 1
And such I am not, Lord, if I am thine.

Clothe me a-new, and feed me then a-fresh :
Else my soul dies familh'd, and starv'd with flesh.



The worse the better.
ELCOME mine health; this sickness makes me well.

Medicines adieu :
When with diseases I have list to dwell,

I'll wish for you.
Welcome my strength; this weakness makes me able.

Powers adieu :
When I am weary grown of standing stable,

I'll wish for you.
Welcome my wealth ; this loss hath gain'd me more.

Riches adieu :
When I again grow greedy to be poor,

I'll wish for you.
Welcome my credit ; this disgrace is glory.

Honours adieu :
When for renown, and fame I shall be sorry,

I'll wish for you.
Welcome content ; this forrow is my joy.

Pleasures adieu :
· When I desire such griefs as may annoy,

I'll wish for you.
Health, Strength, and Riches, Credit, and Content,
Are spared beit, sometimes when they are spent :

Sickness and Weakness, Loss, Disgrace, and Sorrow,
Lend most sometimes, when they moft seem to borrow.
Bleft be the hand, that helps by hurting, gives
By taking, by forsaking me relieves.
If in my fall my rising be thy will,
Lord, I will say, The worse the better still,
I'll speak the paradox, maintain thou it,
And let thy grace supply my want of wit.

Leave me no learning that a man may see,
So I may be a scholar unto thec.

N house I had (an heart I mean) so wide

A ,

That viewing it I thought I might do well,
Rather than keep it void, and make no gain,
Of what I could not use to entertain

Such guests as came: I did; but what befel

Me quickly in that course, I sigh to tell!
A guest I had (alas! I have her still)
A great big-belly'd guest, enough to fill

The vast content of hell, Corruption.
By entertaining her, I lost my right
To more than all the world hath now in light.

Each day, each hour almost, she brought forth one

Or other base-bigot Transgression.
The charge grew great. I, that had loft before
All that I had, was forced now to score

For all the charges of their maintenance
In doomsday book : whoever knew't would say,
The least sum there was more than I could pay,

When firit 'twas due, besides continuance,
Which could not chufe but much the debt enhance.

To ease me first I wish'd her to remove :
But she would not. I lu'd her then above,

And begg’d the court of heaven, but in vain,
To cait her out. No, I could not evade
The bargain, which she pleaded I had made,

That, whilft both lived, I should entertain,

At mine owo charge, both ber and all her train. No help then, but or I must die, or she; And yet my death of no avail would be:

For one death I had dy'd already then, When firft she liv'd in me; and now to die Another death again were but to tie

And twist them both into a third, which when

It once hath seiz'd on, never looseth men, Her death might be my life; but her to kill 1, of myself, had neither power nor will.

So desp’rate was my case. Whilf I delay'd, My gueft ftill teem'd, my debts still greater grew; The less I had to pay, the more was due.

The more I knew, the more I was afraid :

The more I mus'd, the more I was dismay'd. At last I learn'd, there was no way but one : A friend must do it for me. He alone,

That is the Lord of life, by dying can Save men from death, and kill corruption : And many years ago the deed was done,

His heart was pierc'd; out of his fide there ran

Sin's corrosives, restoratives for man.
This precious balm I begg'd, for pity's sake,
At Mercy's gate : where Faith alone may take,

What Grace and Truth do offer lib'rally,
Bounty said, Come, I heard it, and believed ;
Nonc ever there complain'd, but was relieved,

Hope waiting upon Faith said inftantly,

That thenceforth I should live, Corruption dic. And so she dy'd, I live. But yet, alas ! We are not parted : she is where she was,

Cleaves fast unto me ftill, looks thro' mine eyes, Speaks in my tongue, and museth in my mind, Works with mine hands; her body's left behind,

Altho' her soul be gone. My miseries

All flow from hence ; from hence my woes arise, I loath myself, because I leave her not : Yet cannot leave her. No she is my lot,

Now being dead, that living was my choice: And still, tho' dead, the both

conceives and bears Many faults daily, and as many fears :

All which for vengeance call with a loud voice,

And drown my comforts with a deadly noises
Dead bodies kept unbury'd quickly fink,
And putrify: how can I then but think

Corruption noisome, even mortify'd ?
Tho' such she were before, yet such to me
She seemed not. Kind fools can never sec,

Or will not credit, until they have try'd,

That friendly looks oft false intents do hide.
But mortify'd Corruption lies unmask'd,
Blabs her own secret, filthiness unask'd,

To all that understand her. That do none,
In whom she lives embraced with delight;
She first of all deprives them of their sight:

Then doat they on her, as upon their own,

And she to them seems beautiful alone.
But wo is me! One part of me is dead:
The other lives. Yet that which lives is led,

Or rather carry'd captive unto sin,
By the dead part. I am a living grave,
And a dead body I within me have.


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