« EelmineJätka »
Had I the power of creation,
as I have of generation,
where I the matter must obey,
and cannot work plate out of clay: my creatures should be all like thee, 'tis thou should their idea be.
They, like thee, should thoroughly hate
Other wealth they should not know,
the necessity of dying.
Their cheerful heads should always wear all that crowns the flowery year.
They should always laugh, and sing,
and dance, and strike th' harmonious string. Verse should from their tongue so flow, as if it in the mouth did
as swiftly answering their command,
Till my Anacreon by thee fell, cursed plant, I lov'd thee well! and 't was oft my wanton use, to dip my arrows in thy juice. Cursed plant! 'tis true, I see, the old report that goes of thee, that with giants' blood the earth stain'd and poison'd gave thee birth, and now thou wreak'st thy ancient spight on men, in whom the gods delight. Thy patron Bacchus, 't is no wonder, was brought forth in flames and thunder; in rage, in quarrels, and in fights, worse than his tigers, he delights; in all our heaven I think there be no such ill-natur'd god as he. Thou pretendest, trait'rous wine! to be the Muses friend and mine: with love and wit thou dost begin, false fires, alas! to draw us in; which, if our course we by them keep, misguide to madness, or to sleep. Sleep were well; thou'st learnt a way to death itself now to betray.
It grieves me when I see what fate does on the best of mankind wait. Poets, or lovers, let them be,
't is neither love nor poesy
can arm against death's smallest dart
all the world's mortal to 'em then,
Nay, in death's hand, the grape-stone proves as strong as thunder is in Jove's.
MARTIAL, LIB. V. EP. XXI.
Si tecum mihi chare Martialis, &c.
If, dearest friend! it my good fate might be
free, but not savage or ungracious mirth,
such, dearest Friend! such without doubt, should be our place, our business, and our company;
now to himself, alas! does neither live,
but sees good suns, of which we are to give a strict account, set and march thick away; knows a man how to live, and does he stay?
MARTIAL, LIB. II.
Vota tui breviter, &c.
Well, then, sir, you shall know how far extend
would be no lord, but less a lord would have:
MARTIAL, LIB. II:
Vis fieri liber? &c,
Would you be free? 'T is your chief wish, you say: come on; I'll shew thee, friend! the certain way. If to no feasts abroad thou lov'st to go,
whilst bounteous God does bread at home bestow; if thou the goodness of thy clothes dost prize, by thine own use, and not by others' eyes;
if, only safe from weathers, thou canst dwell in a small house, but a convenient shell; if thou, without a sigh, or golden wish, canst look upon thy beachen bowl and dish; if in thy mind such pow'r and greatness be, the Persian king's a slave compar'd with thee.
MARTIAL, LIB. V. EP. LIX,
To-morrow you will live, you always cry; in what far country does this morrow lie, that 't is so mighty long e'er it arrive? beyond the Indies does this morrow live? 't is so far-fetch'd this morrow, that I fear 't will be both very old and very dear. To-morrow I will live, the fool does say; to-day itself's too late; the wise liv'd yesterday.
MARTIAL, LIB. X. EP. XLVII.
Vitam quæ faciunt beatiorum, &c.
Since, dearest friend! 'tis your desire to see