Verse > Anthologies > Edward Farr, comp. > Elizabethan Poetry
Edward Farr, ed.  Select Poetry of the Reign of Queen Elizabeth.  1845.
Psalme LI
LXXXI. Elizabeth Grymeston
Miserere mei, Deus.

HAVE 1 mercy, O good God, on me,
  In greatnesse of thy grace:
O let thy mercies manifolde
  My many faults deface.
Foule, filthy, loathsome, vgly sinne        5
  Hath so defiled me:
With streames of pity wash me cleane,
  Els cleane I cannot be.
Too well my foule uncleansed crimes
  Remembrance do renew;        10
Too plaine in anguish of my heart
  They stand before my view.
To thee alone, O Lord, to thee,
  These euils I haue done,
And in thy presence: woe is me        15
  That ere they were begun!
But since thou pardon promisest,
  Where heart’s true ruth is showen;
Sheu now thy mercies vnto me,
  To make thy iustice knowen:        20
That such as do infringe thy grace,
  Be made asham’d and shent;
As rife thy mercies to beholde,
  As sinners to repent.
With fauour view my foule defects:        25
  In crimes I did beginne;
My nature bad; my mother fraile;
  Conceiu’d I was in sinne.
But since thyself affectest trueth,
  And trueth itselfe is thee,        30
I truely hope to haue thy grace,
  From sinne to set me free:
Since to the faithfull thou before
  The secret science gaue,
Whereby to know what thou wouldst spend        35
  The sinfull world to saue;
Whose heauenly hysope, sacred drops,
  Shall me besprinckle so,
That it my sinne-defiled soule
  Shall wash more white than sno.        40
O when mine eares receiue the sound
  Of such my soule’s release,
How do sinne-laden limmes reioyce
  At heart’s true ioye’s encrease!
From my misdeeds retire thy sight;        45
  View not so foule a staine;
First wipe away my spots impure,
  Then turn thy face againe.
A cleane and vndefiled heart,
  O God, create in me;        50
Let in me, Lord, of righteousnesse
  A spirit infused be.
From that most glorious face of thine
  O cast me not away;
Thy Holy Ghost vouchsafe, O God,        55
  With me that it may stay.
The ioy of thy saluation, Lord,
  Restore to mee againe;
And with the spirit of graces cheefe
  Confirme it to remaine:        60
That when at thy most gracious hand
  My sutes receiued be,
The impious I may instruct,
  How they may turn to thee.
For when, O Lord, I am releast        65
  From vengeance and from bloud,
How ioyfull I shall speake of thee,
  So gracious and so good!
The Lord wilt giue me leaue to speak,
  And I thy praise will shew;        70
For so thy graces do require,
Thou doest on me bestow.
If thou sinne-offrings hast desired,
  As wonted were to be,
How gladly those for all my illes        75
  I would haue yeelded thee!
But thou accepts in sacrifice
  A sorrowing soul for sinne;
Despising not the heart contrite,
  And humble minde within.        80
Deale graciously, O louing Lord,
  In thy free bounty will,
With Zion, thy deare spouse on earth,
  And fortifie it still:
That so thou mayest thence receiue        85
  That soueraigne sacrifice
From altar of all faithful hearts,
  Deuoutly where it lies.
To thee, O Father, glory be,
  And glory to the Sonne,        90
And glory to the Holy Ghost
  Eternally be done.
Note 1. LXXXI. Elizabeth Grymeston.—This lady was the daughter of Martin Barney, or Bernye, of Grimston, in Norfolk, and married Christopher, the youngest son of Thomas Grymeston, in the county of York. She wrote “Miscellanea: prayers, meditations, memoratiues;” in which there are seven “Odes in imitation of the seuen Poenitentiall Psalmes, in seuen seueral kinde of verse.” [back]

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