Cowley, Abraham . The Third Part of the Works of Mr. Abraham Cowley Being his Six Books of Plants
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MUGWORT [The President.]

AFter long cold, grave Matrons! in this place,
(For th'good of ours (I hope) and human race)
This sacred Garden, we whilst others sleep       140
Blest Aprils sacred Nights come here to keep.
Our thanks to Thee, great Father, Sun! we pay,
And to thee, Luna! for thy nursing Ray;
Who the bright Witness art of what we say.
But the short moments of our Liberty
(Who fetter'd at Day break again must lie)       [Latin: 140]
Let us improve, and our affairs attend,
Nor festal hours, like idle Mortals, spend.
'Tis fit at this time we shou'd truly live,
When Winters colds of half our life deprive.
Come then, from useful pains make no delay,
Winter will give you too much time to play.
How many Foes Jove has to you assign'd,
And what a task you in the Conquest find,
By numerous and great fatigues you've try'd,
And to th'opprest kind aid have oft supply'd.
You're generous, noble; female Plants, nor ought
The glory of your Sex cheap to be bought.
The self same Battels you must wage again,
Which will as long as teeming Wombs remain.       160
But that to War you may securer go
'Tis fit the foes and your own strength you know.
Call the bright Moon to witness what you say,
Whilst each such tributes to their Countrey pay.       [Latin: 160]
Let each one willingly both teach and learn,
Nor let that move their envy or their scorn.
And first (I think) upon the menstruous source
My constant task, 'tis fit we shou'd discourse.
From what original Spring that Nilus goes,
Or by what influx it so oft o'rflows.
What will restrain, and what drive on the tide,
And what goods or what mischiefs in it glide.
See you its secret Mysteries disclose,
A thing so weighty 'tis no shame t'expose.
She spake, the rest began, and hotly all
(As Scholars use) upon the business fall.