Verse > Anthologies > Edward Farr, comp. > Elizabethan Poetry
Edward Farr, ed.  Select Poetry of the Reign of Queen Elizabeth.  1845.
VI. Sir Philip Sidney and the Countess of Pembroke
Voce mea ad Dominum.

TO thee my crying call,
  To thee my calling cry,
I did, O God, addresse,
  And thou didst me attend:
To nightly anguish thrall,        5
From thee I sought redresse;
  To thee unceassantly
  Did praying handes extend.
All comfort fled my soule;
  Yea, God to mind I call’d:        10
Yet calling God to mynde
  My thoughts could not appease:
Nought els but bitter dole
Could I in thincking finde:
  My sprite with paine appal’d        15
  Could entertaine no ease.
Whole troupes of busy cares,
  Of cares that from thee came,
Tooke up their restlesse rest
  In sleepie sleeplesse eies:        20
Soe lay I all opprest,
My hart in office lame;
  My tongue as lamely fares;
  No part his part supplies.
At length, with turned thought,        25
  Anew I fell to thinck
Upon the auncient tymes,
  Upon the yeares of old
Yea, to my mynd was brought,
And in my hart did sinck,        30
  What in my former rimes
  My self of thee had told.
Loe, then to search the truth
  I sent my thoughts abroade:
Meane while my silent hart        35
  Distracted thus did plaine:
Will God no more take ruth?
No further love impart?
  No longer be my God?
  Unmoved still remayne?        40
Are all the conduites dry
  Of his erst flowing grace?
Could rusty teeth of tyme
  To nought his promise turne?
Can mercy no more clyme        45
And come before his face?
  Must all compassion dy?
  Must nought but anger burne?
Then lo, my wrack I see—
  Say I, and do I know        50
That change lies in his hand
  Who changelesse sitts aloft?
Can I ought understand,
And yet unmindfull be,
  What wonders from hym flow?        55
  What workes his will hath wrought?
Nay, still thy acts I minde;
  Still of thy deedes I muse;
Still see thy glorie’s light
  Within thy temple shine.        60
What God can any find
(For tearme them so they use)
  Whose majesty, whose might,
  May strive, O God, with thine?
Thou only wonders dost;        65
  The wonders by thee done
All earth do wonder make:
  As when thy hand of old
From servitude unjust
Both Jacob’s sonnes did take,        70
  And sonnes of Jacob’s sonne
  Whom Jacob’s sonnes had sold.
The waves thee saw; saw thee,
  And fearefull fledd the field:
The deepe, with panting brest,        75
  Engulphed quaking lay:
The cloudes thy fingers prest
Did rushing rivers yield;
  Thy shaftes did flaming flee
  Through fiery airy way.        80
Thy voice’s thundring crash
  From one to other pole,
Twixt roofe of starry sphere
  And earth’s then trembling flore,
While light of lightning’s flash        85
Did pitchy cloudes encleare,
  Did round with terror role,
  And rattling horror rore.
Meane while through duskie deepe
  On sea’s discovered bed,        90
Where none thy trace could view,
  A path by thee was wrought:
A path whereon thy crew,
As shepherds use their sheepe,
  Moses and Aron ledd,        95
  And to glad pastures brought.

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