Vpon The Death Of The Lady Olive Stanhope

A poem by Michael Drayton

Canst thou depart and be forgotten so,
STANHOPE thou canst not, no deare STANHOPE, no:
But in despight of death the world shall see,
That Muse which so much graced was by thee
Can black Obliuion vtterly out-braue,
And set thee vp aboue thy silent Graue.
I meruail'd much the Derbian Nimphes were dumbe,
Or of those Muses, what should be become,
That of all those, the mountaines there among,
Not one this while thy Epicediumsung;
But so it is, when they of thee were reft,
They all those hills, and all those Riuers left,
And sullen growne, their former seates remoue,
Both from cleare Darwin, and from siluer Doue,
And for thy losse, they greeued are so sore,
That they haue vow'd they will come there no more;
But leaue thy losse to me, that I should rue thee,
Vnhappy man, and yet I neuer knew thee:
Me thou didst loue vnseene, so did I thee,
It was our spirits that lou'd then and not wee;
Therefore without profanenesse I may call
The loue betwixt vs, loue spirituall:
But that which thou affectedst was so true,
As that thereby thee perfectly I knew;
And now that spirit, which thou so lou'dst, still mine,
Shall offer this a Sacrifice to thine,
And reare this Trophe, which for thee shall last,
When this most beastly Iron age is past;
I am perswaded, whilst we two haue slept,
Our soules haue met, and to each other wept,
That destenie so strongly should forbid,
Our bodies to conuerse as oft they did:
For certainly refined spirits doe know,
As doe the Angels, and doe here belowe
Take the fruition of that endlesse blisse,
As those aboue doe, and what each one is.
They see diuinely, and as those there doe,
They know each others wills, so soules can too.
About that dismall time, thy spirit hence flew,
Mine much was troubled, but why, I not knew,
In dull and sleepy sounds, it often left me,
As of it selfe it ment to haue bereft me,
I asked it what the cause was, of such woe,
Or what it might be, that might vexe it so,
But it was deafe, nor my demand would here,
But when that ill newes came, to touch mine eare,
I straightwayes found this watchfull sperit of mine,
Troubled had bin to take it leaue of thine,
For when fate found, what nature late had done,
How much from heauen, she for the earth had won
By thy deare birth; said, that it could not be
In so yong yeares, what it perceiu'd in thee,
But nature sure, had fram'd thee long before;
And as Rich Misers of their mighty store,
Keepe the most precious longst, so from times past,
She onely had reserued thee till the last;
So did thy wisedome, not thy youth behold,
And tooke thee hence, in thinking thou wast old.
Thy shape and beauty often haue to me
Bin highly praysed, which I thought might be,
Truely reported, for a spirit so braue,
Which heauen to thee so bountifully gaue;
Nature could not in recompence againe,
In some rich lodging but to entertaine.
Let not the world report then, that the Peake,
Is but a rude place only vast and bleake;
And nothing hath to boast of but her Lead,
When she can say that happily she bred
Thee, and when she shall of her wonders tell
Wherein she doth all other Tracts excell,
Let her account thee greatst, and still to time
Of all the rest, accord thee for the prime.

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