The Abraham Cowley Text and Image Archive

Leaving Me, and then loving Many
from The Mistress, Poems (1656; editor's copy)

SO Men, who once have cast the Truth away,
Forsook by God, do strange wild lusts obey;
So the vain Gentiles, when they left t' adore
One Deity, could not stop at thousands more.
Their zeal was senseless strait, and boundless grown;
They worshipt many a Beast, and many a Stone.
Ah fair Apostate! couldst thou think to flee
From Truth and Goodness, yet keep Unitie?
I reign'd alone; and my blest Self could call
The Universal Monarch of her All.  10
Mine, mine her fair East-Indies were above,
Where those Suns rise that chear the world of Love;
Where beauties shine like gems of richest price;
Where Coral grows, and every breath is spice:
Mine too her rich West-Indies were below,
Where Mines of gold and endless treasures grow.
But, as, when the Pellæan Conqueror dy'd,
Many small Princes did his Crown divide,
So, since my Love his vanquisht world forsook,
Murther'd by poysons from her falshood took,  20
An hundred petty Kings claim each their part,
And rend that glorious Empire of her Heart.

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