On the Death of the late Earl of Rochester

A poem by Arphra Behn

Mourn, Mourn, ye Muses, all your loss deplore,
The Young, the Noble Strephon is no more.
Yes, yes, he fled quick as departing Light,
And ne're shall rise from Deaths eternal Night,
So rich a Prize the Stygian Gods ne're bore,
Such Wit, such Beauty, never grac'd their Shore.
He was but lent this duller World t'irnprove
In all the charms of Poetry, and Love;
Both were his gift, which freely he bestow'd,
And like a God, dealt to the wond'ring Crowd.
Scorning the little Vanity of Fame,
Spight of himself attain'd a Glorious name.
But oh! in vain was all his peevish Pride,
The Sun as soon might his vast Lustre hide,
As piercing, pointed, and more lasting bright,
As suffering no vicissitudes of Night.

Mourn, Mourn, ye Muses, all your loss deplore,
The Young, the Noble Strephon is no more.
Now uninspired upon your Banks we lye,
Unless when we wou'd moum his Elegie;

His name's a Genius that wou'd Wit dispense,
And give the Theme a Soul, the Words a Sense.
But A fine thought that Ravisht when it spoke
With the soft Youth eternal leave has took;
Uncommon Wit that did the soul o'recome,
Is buried all in Strephon 's Worship'd Tomb;
Satyr has lost its Art, its Sting is gone,
The Fop and Cully now may be undone;
That dear instructing Rage is now Aay'd,
And no sharp Pen dares tell 'em how they've stray'd;
Bold as a God was ev'ry lash he took,
But kind and gentle the chastising stroke.

Mourn, Mourn, ye Youths, whom Fortune has betray'd,
The last Reproacher of your Vice is dead.
Mourn, all ye Beauties, put your Cyprus on,
The truest Swain that e're Ador'd you's gone;
Think how he lov'd, and writ, and sigh'd, and spoke,
Recall his Meen, his Fashion, and his Look.
By what dear Arts the Soul he did surprize,
Soft as his Voice, and charming as his Eyes.

Bring Garlands all of never-dying Flow'rs,
Bedew'd with everlasting failing Show'rs;
Fix your fair eyes upon your victim'd Slave,
Sent Gay and Young to his untimely Grave.
See where the Noble Swain Extended lies,
Too sad a Triumph of your Victories;
Adom'd with all the Graces Heav'n e're lent,
All that was Great, Soft, Lovely, Excellent
You've laid into his early Monument.
Mourn, Mourn, ye Beauties, your sad loss deplore,
The Young, the Charming Strephon is no more.

Mourn, all ye little Gods of Love, whose
Darts Have lost their wonted power of piercing hearts;
Lay by the gilded Quiver and the Bow,
The useless Toys can do no Mischief now,
Those Eyes that all your Arrows points inspir'd,
Those Lights that gave ye fire are now retir'd,
Cold as his Tomb, pale as your Mothers Doves;
Bewail him then oh all ye little Loves,
For you the humblest Votary have lost

That ever your Divinities could boast;
Upon your hands your weeping Heads decline,
And let your wings encompass round his Shrine;
In stead of Flow'rs your broken Arrows strow,
And at his feet lay the neglected Bow.
Mourn, all ye little Gods, your loss deplore,
The soft, the Charming Strephon is no more.
Large was his Fame, but short his Glorious Race,
Like young Lucretius and dy'd apace.
So early Roses fade, so over all

They cast their fragrant scents, then softly fall,
While all the scatter'd perfum'd leaves declare,
How lovely 'twas when whole, how sweet, how fair.
Had he been to the Roman Empire known,
When great Augustus fili'd the peaceful Throne;
Had he the noble wond'rous Poet seen,
And known his Genius, and survey'd his Meen,
(When Wits, and Heroes grac'd Divine abodes,)
He had increas'd the number of their Gods;
The Royal Judge had Temples rear'd to's name,
And made him as Immortal as his Fame;
In Love and Verse his Ovid he'ad out-done,
And all his Laurels, and hisjulia won.
Mourn, Mourn, unhappy World, his loss deplore,
The great, the charming Strephon is no more.

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