Francis Quarles

Hos ego versiculos

LIKE to the damaske rose you see,
Or like the blossome on the tree,
Or like the daintie flower of May,
Or like the Morning to the day,
Or like the Sunne, or like the shade,
Or like the Gourd which Jonas had;
    Even such is man whose thred is spun,
    Drawn out and cut, and so is done.

The Rose withers, the blossome blasteth,
The flowre fades, the morning hasteth:
The Sunne sets, the shadow flies,
The Gourd consumes, and man he dies.

Like to the blaze of fond delight;
Or like a morning cleare and bright;
Or like a frost, or like a showre;
Or like the pride of Babel's Tower;

Or like the houre that guides the time;
Or like to beauty in her prime;
    Even such is man, whose glory lends
    His life a blaze or two, and ends.

Delights vanish; the morne o'ercasteth,
The frost breaks, the shower hasteth;
The Tower falls, the hower spends;
The beauty fades, and man's life ends.

Finis.  Fr. Qu.     
Argalus and Parthenia, 1629

The Oxford Book of Seventeenth Century Verse.
H. J. C. Grierson and G. Bullough, eds.
Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1934. 339-340.


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