Verse > Anthologies > Edward Farr, comp. > Elizabethan Poetry
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Edward Farr, ed.  Select Poetry of the Reign of Queen Elizabeth.  1845.
 
Jeremie’s Prayer
LXXXIII. Thomas Drant
 
REMEMBRE, 1 Lorde, what hath betyde
  To vs; beholde and see
Our opprobryes, and what they are,
  And eeke are lyke to be.
 
Our heritaunce is cut of quyte,        5
  And turnde to folke prophaine;
Our houses by the aliauntes,
  The barberouse, is tayne.
 
Our mothers, sillie as they be,
  Like wydowes sytt alone:        10
Orphanes are we, pore orphanes we,
  And father haue we none.
 
We boughte the water whiche we druncke;
  For wood our coyne we payde;
Our neckes were hamperde vnder yoke,        15
  Restlesse, fainte, and ill stayde.
 
To Egipte and Assiria
  Our hande of league we lente;
That we might haue a smal of bread,
  Our carcas to contente.        20
 
Our parentes, they transgreste thy law,
  And now they are no more;
And we their burthynouse offence
  And masse of trespasse bore.
 
Slaues ruled vs, and none woulde ryd        25
  Vs from their handes and gyues:
We earnde our bread with extreme toyle,
  And hasarde of our liues.
 
Because of wastefull sworde, that from
  The deserte did issue,        30
Our skinne is blacke through pauling pyne,
  And like to soote in hue.
 
The wedded wyfes in Tsion towne
  Were wickedlie defeilde;
And Juda’s virgins were deflourde,—        35
  All chastitie exilde.
 
The princes and the potentates
  Are hanged by the handes;
No man in feare or reuerence
  Of elder’s vysage standes.        40
 
Our yonge men, lyke to vylaine thrawles,
  In drudgerie did grinde;
Our children, babes infortunate,
  To gallowes were assignde.
 
The elders rauishte from the gates,        45
  The yonge men from their songes;
Our ioyful harte is gone, our daunce
  Is whyninge at our wronges.
 
Our glittringe crowne, our temple braue,
  The Lorde did quyte fordoe:        50
Woe, euer woe! and out, alas!
  That we haue sinned so.
 
Our hearte with sadnesse is surchargde,
  Our eyes can see no whit;
Because Mounte Tzion is forsakte,        55
  And foxes run on it.
 
But thou, O Lorde, for euer standes;
  Aye duringe is thy throne:
Why doste thou stil forsake vs, Lorde,
  Still leauinge vs alone?        60
 
Turne, O Lorde, turne thee vnto vs,
  That we maye turne to thee;
And may our dayes, as at the firste,
  From sinne and mischiefes free.
 
But thou haste clearely caste vs of,        65
  And mells with vs no more:
Thou arte, no doubte, Lorde, throughlie chafte,
  And angerde verye sore.
 
Note 1. LXXXIII. Thomas Drant.—This author, who was more memorable as a preacher than a poet, wrote “A Medicinable Morall, that is, the two Bookes of Horace his Satyres; Englyshed according to the prescription of Saint Hierome. The Wailyngs of the Prophet Hieremiah, done into Englyshe verse. Also Epigrammes.” This book was published in 1566, being “perused and allowed accordyng to the Quene’s Maiestie’s iniunctions.” [back]
 
 
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