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Sir Francis Bacon,

1561-1626.

LIFE.

THE

'HE World's a bubble; and the life of man

Less than a span :
In his conception wretched; from the womb,

So to the tomb :
Curst from the cradle, and brought up to years,

With cares and fears.
Who then to frail Mortality shall trust
But limmes the water, or but writes in dust.

Courts

are

Yet, since with sorrow here we live opprest,

What life is best?

but only superficial schools

To dandle fools :
The rural parts are turned into a den

Of savage men :
And where's a city from all vice so free

be termed the worst of all the three?

But

may

Domestic

cares afflict the husband's bed, Or pains, his head :

Those that live single, take it for a curse,

Or do things worse :
Some would have children ; those that have them none ;

Or wish them gone.
What is it then to have or have no wife
But single thraldom or a double strife?

Our own affections still at home to please,

Is a disease :
To cross the sea to any foreign soil,

Perils and toil :
Wars with their noise affright us : when they cease

We are worse in peace.
What then remains, but that we still should cry,
Not to be born, or being born, to die.

XXVI.

SAMUEL DANIEL,

1562–1619.

SONG.

Lo

OVE is a sickness full of woes,

All remedies refusing ;
A plant that with most cutting grows,
Most barren with best using.

Why so?
More we enjoy it, more it dies;
If not enjoyed, it sighing cries,

Hey, ho !

Love is a torment of the mind,

A tempest everlasting ;
And Jove hath made it of a kind
Not well, nor full, nor fasting.

Why so?
More we enjoy it, more it dies ;
If not enjoyed, it sighing cries,

Hey, ho !

XXVII.

ULYSSES AND THE SIREN.

CON

SIREN. "OME worthy Greek, Ulysses, come,

Possess these shores with me,
The winds and seas are troublesome,

And here we may be free.
Here may we sit and view their toil

That travail in the deep,
And joy the day in mirth the while,

And spend the night in sleep.

ULYSSES.
Fair nymph, if fame or honour were

To be attained with ease,
Then would I come and rest with thee,

And leave such toils as these.
But here it dwells, and here must I

With danger seek it forth,
To spend the time luxuriously

Becomes not men of worth.

SIREN.

Ulysses, O be not deceived

With that unreal name,

'Tis honour is a thing conceived,

And rests on others fame.
Begotten only to molest

Our peace, and to beguile,
The best thing of our life, our rest,

And give us up to toil.

ULYSSES.
Delicious nymph, suppose there were

Nor honour nor report,
Yet manliness would scorn to wear

The time in idle sport;
For toil doth give a better touch

To make us feel our joy,
And ease finds tediousness as much

As labour yields annoy.

SIREN.

Then pleasure likewise seems the shore

Whereto tends all your toil,
Which you forego to make it more,

And perish oft the while.
Who may disport them diversely

Find never tedious day,
And ease may have variety

As well as action may.

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