Verse > Anthologies > Edward Farr, comp. > Elizabethan Poetry
Edward Farr, ed.  Select Poetry of the Reign of Queen Elizabeth.  1845.
The Lenuoy
CXXXVII. Nicholas Boweman
THE HIGHEST tree is seldome times most sure,
The swelling floods yeelde ebbes that drench ful low;
Nothing so firme that alwaies can indure:
The tydes through time weare out their times, we know;
The sunne eclips’d, the moone bereft of light,        5
The day surpris’d, the night abandoned quight.
Houres, dayes, and yeeres, runne out their course at last;
The candell bright hath his extinct in time:
None can recall swift time when time is past;
What bootes it then for worldly pompe to clime?        10
The watch forwarnes when as the clock will strike;
The cock and clocke are watches both alike.
The fairest day assures his glowning houre;
The sunshine bright is covered oft with shade:
Man’s harvest is compared to a flower,        15
That unawares doth perish, waste, and fade,
And whose pride past beares but a withered hue,
And bendes, and biddes the gardner then adew.
Our life a lampe, that for a time burnes bright;
Our life a spanne, when it is at the best:        20
Our life assur’d of neither day nor night,
Our life a smoake and unassured rest;
Our life, our state, our stay and vital breath,
Subject unto the sudden call of death.

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