The Abraham Cowley Text and Image Archive

The Passions
from The Mistress, Poems (1656; editor's copy)

FRom Hate, Fear, Hope, Anger, and Envy free,
   And all the Passions else that be,
   In vain I boast of Liberty,
   In vain this State a Freedom call;
   Since I have Love, and Love is all:
Sot that I am, who think it fit to brag,
That I have no Disease besides the Plague!
So in a zeal the Sons of Israel,
   Sometimes upon their Idols fell;
   And they depos'd the powers of Hell,  10
   Baal, and Astarte down they threw,
   And Accaron and Molock too:
All this imperfect Piety did no good,
Whilst yet, alas, the Calf of Bethel stood.
Fondly I boast, that I have drest my vine
   With painful art, and that the wine
   Is of a tast rich and divine,
   Since Love by mixing Poyson there,
   Has made it worse than vinegere.
Love even the taste of Nectar changes so,  20
That Gods choose rather water here below.
Fear, Anger, Hope, all Passions else that be,
   Drive this one Tyrant out of me,
   And practise all your Tyrannie.
   The change of ills some good will do:
   Th' oppressed wretched Indians so,
Be'ing slaves by the great Spanish Monarch made,
Call in the States of Holland to their aid.

This text normalized in the same way as Cowley's "Hymn to Light."
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