1688 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Abraham Cowley

Anonymous, "Sent with Cowleys Workes to Astrea" Paul Talleman, Miscellany of New Poems (1688) 35-36.



The Gentle Cowley, in a mournful strain,
Once of Injurious fortune did complain.
But thought not then, that our obliging times
Wou'd recompence his unrewarded Rhimes;
For now presented at Astrea's feet
His noble Muse her full reward does meet:
The Mistress, whose bright charmes such fame did gain,
Was but a fair creation of his Brain.
And nature griev'd, to see the Art of thought
Exceed the finest Pieces, she had wrought,
Resolv'd to try the best her Power cou'd do,
Expressing all his fancy'd charmes in you:
Since then in you those reall beauties live,
That to those Poems such applause cou'd give,
No wonder that I feel a flame for you,
Beyond what Cowley e're describ'd or knew,
Think, therefore, when his tender lines you see,
Your self the Mistress, and the Lover me.