Verse > Anthologies > Edward Farr, comp. > Jacobean Poetry
Edward Farr, ed.  Select Poetry of the Reign of King James the First.  1847.
To Earth
XCI. John Hagthorpe
EARTH, thou art a barren field
  Of delight and true contending;
All the pleasures thou dost yeeld
  Give but cause of sad lamenting.
        Where desires        5
        Are the fires,
  Still our soules tormenting.
Riches, honour, dignitie,
  Are the highway to misfortune;
Greatnesse is a lethargie        10
  That to death can soon transport one.
        To be faire
        Causeth care,
  Gifts chaste thoughts importune.
To be wittie, quick of tongue,        15
  Sorrow to themselves returneth;
To be healthfull, young, and strong,
  Feeds the flames where passion burneth.
        Yet doe men
        Couet them        20
  More than what adorneth.
To have friends and louers kind,
  That vs round enuiron;
Wife and children, though we find,
  These be robes that best attire one;        25
        Yet their losse
        Is a crosse,
  Melting hearts of iron.
To be perfect here, and wise,
  Is to know our indiscretions;        30
And our goodnes chiefly lies
  In observing our transgressions:
        For we dwell
        As in hell,
  Thrall to bad impressions.        35
Then, alas! why long we so
  With lou’d sorrow still to languish?
Is there ought on earth but woe,
  Aye renewing cares and anguish?
        Where new feares        40
        Still appeares,
  Darts at vs to brandish.

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