From gloomie shaddowes of eternall Night,
Shut up in Darknesse, endlesly to dwell,
O, here behold, Me miserable Wight,
Awhile releas'd, my Tragedie to tell,
Let Me have leave my Sorrowes to impart,
Somewhat to ease my sad afflicted Heart.
Goddesse of Armes, and Arts, P ALLAS Divine,
Let thy bright Fauchion lend Me Cypresse Boughes,
Be thou assisting to this Poet of mine,
With Funerall Wreath's ingarlanding His Browes,
Pittying my Woes, when none would heare Me weepe,
That for my Sorrowes, layes His owne to sleepe.
Thou mournfulst-Mayden of the Sacred Nine,
That Balefull sounds immovably do'st breathe,
With thy swolne Visage, and thy blubb'red Eine,
Let Me to Thee, my sad Complaints bequeathe.
Ne'r to thy Selfe canst thou winne greater Glorie,
Then in exactly setting forth my Storie.
Tell how the Fates my giddie Course did guide,
Th'inconstant turnes of ev'rie changing houre,
By many a low Ebbe, many a lustie Tide,
Many a smooth Calme, many a sowsing Showre,
The height whereto, I lastly did ascend,
Bend my Beginning to my Fatall End.
When our first E DWARD , sat on Englands Throne,
L ONG-SHANKS , who long victoriously did raigne,
First of that Name, and Second yet to None:
In what to Knight-hood ever did pertayne;
My Life began, a Life so full of Blisse,
Then in His Dayes, those happie Dayes of His.
Vertue did then Mens hearts so much inflame,
That no Promotion could be got with Gold;
For in his dayes He that desired Fame,
Bought it of Him, that it full dearely sold,
Hatefull Excesse so much did not devoure,
Law had lesse force, and honestie more Power.
And since swift Time so violently preyes,
Upon those Ages that even holiest be;
Let Me remember those so happie Dayes;
In these sad houres, which my vex'd Eyes doe see,
With greater griefe to make me to deplore
These, when I thinke of those that were of yore.
Then Muse, lo, I obsequiously appeale
To thee, (my life since I intend to show)
That thou of Me wilt faithfully reveale,
Even what the most Inquisitive would know,
Whilst here my Soule inbodyed did abide,
In this vaine World, which pampred Me with Pride.
By Birth a Gascoyne , of a faire Descent,
And of our House, the Heire My Father borne,
In all His Warres, that with King E DWARD went,
To Him His Liegeman, and a Souldier sworne,
And in our Countrey left His whole Estate,
To follow Him, who seem'd to governe Fate.
Whose trust that Great King highly did imploy,
And neere His Person had Him for the same,
Who with my Selfe, then but a little Boy,
Into the Court of Famous England came,
Whereas the King for Service by Him done,
Made Me a Page to the brave Prince his Sonne.
All Men in Shape I did so farre excell;
(The Parts in Me such Harmonie did beare)
As in my Modell, Nature seem'd to tell,
That Her perfection She had placed here,
As from each Age reserving the rar'st Feature,
To make Me up, Her excellentest Creature.
My Lookes so powerfull Adamants to Love,
And had such Vertue to attract the Sight,
That they could fix it, or could make it move,
As though it followed some Celestiall Light,
That where my Thoughts intended to surprize,
I at my pleasure conquer'd with mine Eyes.
As if some great A PELLES in his Art,
Would that the World His Master-piece should know,
Imagination doing then her part;
When he had done the utmost he could doe,
For that rare Picture to fit out a Mind,
This one was I, the Wonder of my kind.
This daintie Bait I layd for E DWARDS Love,
Which soone upon Him got so sure a Tye,
As no misfortune e'r could it remove,
When She the utmost of Her force did trye,
Nor death it selfe had after power to sunder,
O seld-seene Friendship, in the World a Wonder!
Love, on this Earth, the only Meane thou art,
Whereby we hold Intelligence with Heaven,
And it is thou that only do'st impart,
The good that to Mortalitie is given
O, Sacred Bond, by Time that art not broken!
O thing Divine, by Angels to be spoken!
Thus with young E DWARD , bath'd in worldly Blisse,
Whilst Tutors care His wandring Yeeres did guide,
I liv'd, enjoying whatsoe'r was His:
Who ne'r my Pleasure any thing deny'd.
Whose watchfull Eye so duly Me attended,
As on my safetie, if His life depended.
But whether it my rare Perfections were,
That wonne my youth such Favour in His Eye,
Or it pleas'd Heaven (to shew it held Me deare)
To showre on Me this Blessing from the Skye,
I know not, but it rightly could direct,
That could produce so powerfull an effect.
O thou dread Booke, where our Fates are enroll'd,
Who hath so cleere Eyes, as to looke into thee?
What is that Man, by whom thou art controll'd,
Or hath the Key of Reason to undoe thee,
When none but Heaven, thy darke Decrees can know,
Whose depth we sound not, which dwell here below?
The soule Her liking easly can espye,
(By Sympathie, to Her by Heaven assign'd)
Through Her cleere Windowes, the wel-seeing Eye,
Which doth convay the Image to the Mind,
Without advisement, and can apprehend,
That whose true cause, Mans knowledge doth transcend.
This E DWARD in the Aprill of his Age,
Whilst yet the Crowne sat on his Fathers head,
Like sportfull J OVE , with his rapt Phrygian Page,
Me with Ambrosiall Delicacies fed,
He might command that was the Soveraign's Sonne,
But my direction only must be done.
My Will a Law, authentically past,
My Yea, by Him was never cross'd with No,
In His affection chain'd to Me so fast,
That as my shaddow still he seem'd to goe,
To Me this Prince, so plyant was in all,
Still as an Eccho answering to My call.
My Smiles His life, so joy'd He in my sight,
That His Delight was led by my Desire,
From my cleere Eyes, so borrowing all His Light,
As pale-fac'd C YNTHIA , from her Brothers fire.
He made my Cheeke, the Pillow for His Head,
My Brow His Booke, my Bosome was His Bed.
Like faire I DALIA , bent to amorous sport,
With young A DONIS , in the pleasant shade,
Expressing their affections in that sort,
As though her utmost passion should perswade
The one of us, the other still to move,
To all the tender Dalliances of Love.
The Table thus of our Delight was lay'd,
Serv'd with what Dainties Pleasure could devise,
And many a Syren sweetly to us play'd,
But Youth had not, us therewith to suffice:
For we on that insatiately did feed,
Which our Confusion after wards did breed.
For still I spurr'd up his untam'd Desire,
Then sitting in the Chariot of the Sunne,
My blandishments were Fuell to that fire,
Wherein He fry'd: I for his flight begunne
To wax His Wings; and taught Him Art to flie,
Who on His backe, might beare Me through the Skie.
Whilst the vaine World so cunningly could winne
Us, Her false Flatteries, who too long did trust,
Till having lost the Clue which led us in,
We wandred in the Labyrinth of Lust:
" For when the Soule is nusl'd once in vice,
" The sweet of Sinne, makes Hell a Paradice.
Who to the full, thy vilenesse, World, e'r told,
What is in Thee, that's not extremely ill?
A lothsome Shop, where poysons only sold,
Whose very entrance instantly doth kill,
Nothing in Thee but villanie doth dwell,
And all thy wayes lead head-long into Hell.
The King, whose trust I lewdly had betrayd,
His Sonne, like Phaeton , vent'ring on the Skies,
Perceiv'd his course was per'lous to be stayd,
For he was Grave, and wonderfully wise,
And if with skill he curb'd not his desire,
E DWARD might easly set his Throne on fire.
This was a corsive to old E DWARDS dayes,
And without ceasing fed upon his Bones,
That in the Day bereav'd him of his ease,
Breaking his Nights sleepe with continuall mones,
This more depres'd, and sadlyer way'd him downe,
Then the care else, belonging to his Crowne.
And though he had judicially descryde
The cause, from whence this maladie first grew,
It was no cure, unlesse he could provide
Meanes to prevent the danger to ensue,
Wherefore, he for his purpose made them way,
Against my courses, that had ought to say.
When those in Court, my Opposites that were,
This faire advantage and could finely take,
And for my Fall, what did to them appeare,
So fitly for their purposes to make,
Thereon their Forces instantly to ground,
Me to the World perpetually to wound,
What thing so false, but taken was for truth,
So that on me a scandall it might bring,
By such as stucke not to accuse my Youth,
To sinne in the unnaturall'st thing,
And all fore-passed outrages awake,
Me to Mankind contemptible to make?
Wherefore, the Prince more straitly was bestow'd,
In forrayne Realmes and I adjudg'd to roame,
And sharply censur'd to be held abroad,
Who had betrayd my hopefull trust at Home,
Adjudg'd to dye, were I by any found,
After my set Day, on the English ground.
That, as astounded with a mightie blow,
I stood awhile insensible of payne,
Till somewhat wakened by my colder woe,
I felt the wound, by which my Joyes were slayne,
By which I faynted hourely, more and more,
Nor could I thinke, what cure could me restore.
But as a Turtle for her loved Make,
Whose Youth her deare Virginitie injoy'd,
Sits shrowded in some solitarie Brake,
With melancholy pensivenesse annoy'd,
Thus without comfort sate I all alone,
From the Sweet Presence of Prince E DWARD gone.
My Beautie, that disdayn'd the Summers sight,
Now fouly beaten with bleake Winters stormes,
My Limbs were put to travell Day and Night,
So often hugg'd in Princely E DWARDS Armes,
Those Eyes oft viewing Pleasure in her pride,
Saw fearefull Objects on their either side.
Whilst in these Tempests I was strangely tost,
My selfe confining in my native France ,
By many a sad calamitie still crost,
Inseparables to my sore mischance,
Others that stem'd the Current of the Time,
Whence I had falne, strove suddenly to Clime.
Like the Camelion, whilst Time turnes the hue,
And with false P ROTEUS puts on sundrie shapes,
This change scarce gone, a second doth ensue,
One fild, another for promotion gapes,
Thus doe they swarme like Flyes about the brim,
Some drownd, and some doe with much danger swim.
And some, on whom the Sunne shone wondrous fayre,
Yet of the Season little seem'd to vaunt,
For there were Clouds hung in the troubled Ayre,
Threatning, that they of their desires might want,
Which made them flagge, prepared else to flye,
Whilst with their Falls, they fading Honour buy.
When posting Time, that never turnes againe,
Whose winged Feet flie swiftly with the Sunne,
By the Fleet houres attending on his Traine,
His Revolution fatally begunne,
And in his course brought suddenly about,
That, which before the wiser sort did doubt.
For whilst King E DWARD wholly doth attend,
A happy Voyage to the Holy Land,
For which the Laeytie mightie Summes did lend,
Even whilst this businesse hotly was in hand,
See, but to me what fortune there can fall,
This Conquerors death hath quickly alterd all.
Should I presume his Prayses to report,
Thinking thereby to grace his so great Name,
My meane indevours would fall farre too short,
And I too much should but impaire his Fame,
Ile leave that to some sacred Muse to tell,
Upon whose Life a Poets Pen might dwell.
Scarce was his Body lap'd up in the Lead,
Before his dolefull Obsequies were done,
When Englands Crowne was set on E DWARDS head,
With whom too soone my joyfull dayes begun,
As the black Night at the approching Day,
My former sorrowes vanished away.
E DWARD C ARNARVON calls me from Exile,
Whom E DWARD L ONGSHANKS banish'd to his death,
I, whom the Father held most base and vile,
Was to the Sonne as precious as his Breath,
What th'old King writ, the yong King forth did blot,
" Th'alive's remembred, dead mens words forgot.
The faire Wind wafts me to that wish'd-for Place,
And sets me safely on that blessed Shore,
From whence I seem'd, but banish'd for a space,
That my returne might honor'd be the more,
There to my lov'd Lord, happily to leave me,
Whose Armes were cast wide open to receave me.
Who would have seene that Noble Roman Dame,
O'rcome with joy, give up her vitall Breath,
Her Sonne returning, sounded in by fame,
When thankefull Rome had mourned for his death.
Might here behold her personated right,
At my approch, to my deare E DWARDS sight.
My J OVE , now Lord of the Ascendantis,
In an Aspect, to promise happy speed,
And such on me that influence of his,
As prays'd the Course, wherein we did proceed,
Yet most prodigious it to some appeares,
Telling the Troubles of ensuing Yeares.
When like to M IDAS all I touch'd was Gold,
Upon me showr'd, as into D ANA'S Lap,
For, I obtayned any thing I would,
So well had Fortune lotted out my hap,
" For Princes Treasures like to Oceans are,
" To whom all Rivers naturally repayre.
The Isle of Man , the first, to me he gave,
He could not stay, untill I would demand,
And to be sure to give, ere I could crave,
I next received from his bounteous Hand,
Faire Wallingford , which many yeeres had beene,
The wealthy Dower of E LIANOR the Queene.
Those Summes his Father had beene levying long,
By Impositions, for the Warre abroad,
Other his Princely benefits among,
At once on me he liberally bestow'd,
When some that saw, how much on me he cast,
Perceiv'd, his wealth could not maintayne his waste.
He gave me then his Secretaries place,
Thereby to trayne me in affaires of State:
Me in those Roomes, that I was in, to grace,
And Earle of Cornwall frankly did create,
Besides, in Court more freely to partake me,
Of England , he High Chamberlayne did make me.
And to the Royall Blood me to aly,
(Which did but backe my humour of Ambition)
In Bands of Wedlocke did to me affie,
A Lady of an excellent condition,
Which J OANE of Aeres his deare Sister bare,
To th'Earle of Gloster , that right Noble Clare .
O blessed Bountie, giving all content!
The only Fautresse of all Noble Arts,
That lend'st successe to every good intent,
A grace that rests in the most Godlike Hearts,
By Heaven to none, but happy Soules infused,
Pitie it is, that ere thou wast abused.
When those here first that my Exile procur'd,
Which in my Heart still hated did abide,
As they before, by no meanes me endur'd,
So were they now impatient of my pride,
" For Emulation ever did attend
" Upon the Great, and shall so to the end.
To crosse whom, into favour I wrought those,
That from meane Places lifted up by me,
Being factious Spirits, were fittest to oppose
Them, that perhaps too powerfull else might be,
That against Envie raysed by my Hand,
Must uphold me, to make themselves to stand.
Having my Frame so cunningly contriv'd,
To boulster me in my ambitious Wayes,
I shew'd the King my hate to be deriv'd,
From those high Honours that he on me layes,
Drawing him on (my courses to partake)
Still to maintayne what he himselfe did make.
Thus did my Youth but exercise extreames,
My heed was Rashnesse to forerunne my Fall,
My Wit but folly, and my Hopes but dreames,
My Counsell serv'd my selfe but to inthrall,
Abusing me but with a vaine Illusion,
And all together hasting my Confusion.
When as King E DWARD hastneth his repaire,
T'espouse the Princesse I SABEL of France ,
Daughter to P HILIP that was call'd the F AIRE ,
By which he thought his strength much to advance,
And here at Home to perfect my command,
He left me the protection of the Land,
Giving me Power so absolute withall,
That I dranke pleasure in a plentious Cup,
When there was none me to account to call,
All to my Hands so freely rendred up,
That Heaven on me no greater blisse could bring,
Except to make me greater then my King.
Thus being got as high as I could clime,
With this abundance beyond measure blest,
I thought t'imbrace the benefit of Time,
Fully to take what freely I possest,
" Holding for truth, that he is worse then mad,
" Fondly to spare a Princes wealth that had.
Their counsell then continually I crost,
As scorning their Authoritie and Blood,
And those things that concern'd their Honours most,
In those against them evermore I stood,
And things for publique privately did spend:
To feed my Ryot that could find no end:
Untill false Fortune, like a treacherous Foe,
Which had so long attended on my Fall,
In the playne Path wherein I was to goe,
Layd many a baite to trayne me on withall,
Till by her skill shee cunningly had brought me
Into the Trap, where shee at pleasure caught me.
For when the Barons hotly went in Hand,
With Tilts and Turney's for the Kings returne,
To shew the French the glorie of the Land,
The fixed Day I labour'd to adjourne,
Till all their charge was lastly over throwne,
Who could abide no Glorie but mine owne.
Thus sought my Fate me forward still to set,
As though some Engine seys'd me with a slight:
One mischiefe soone a Second doth beget,
The Second brings a Third but on too right,
And every one it selfe imployeth wholly,
In their just course to prosecute my folly.
For when the Barons found me to retayne,
Th'ambitious course wherein I first began,
And deeply felt, that under my disdayne,
Into contempt continually they ran,
They tooke up Armes to remedie their wrong,
Which their cold Spirits had suffred but too long;
Me boldly charging to abuse the King,
A wastefull Spender of his Wealth and Treasure,
A secret Thiefe of many a sacred Thing,
And that I led him to unlawfull Pleasure,
Who never did in any thing delight,
But what might please my Bestiall appetite:
That like a sicknesse on the Land was sent,
Whose hatefull courses the chiefe cause had beene,
The Common-wealth thus totter'd was and rent,
And worse and worse yet every day foreseene.
Thus was I scandall'd publiquely of many,
Who pitied none, not pitied was of any.
And since I thus was match'd by Men of might,
The King, my danger that discreetly way'd,
Seeing them to pursue me with such spight,
Me into Ireland secretly convay'd,
Till with my Peeres, my peace he might procure,
Or might my safetie otherwise assure.
Like one whose House remedilesly burning,
Seeing his Goods long heap'd together lost,
The mischiefe no whit lesned by his mourning,
Taketh some one thing that he loveth most,
And to some sure place doth with that retire,
Leaving the rest to th'mercy of the Fire.
And he that nought to deare for me did deeme,
So it might serve to cover my disgrace,
To make my absence otherwise to seeme,
And to the World to beare a fayrer Face,
Lest my Exile suggested by their hate,
In England here perhaps might wound my State:
By their wise Counsell that were him about,
Of Ireland he me Deputie doth make,
And caus'd it each-where to be given out,
My Journey therefore thither I did take,
To stop their mouth's that gladly would imbrace
The least thing, that might sound to my disgrace.
Whereas he set me in that Princely sort,
As in my place might purchase me Renowne,
With no lesse Bountie to maintayne a Court,
Then hourely crav'd th'Revenues of a Crowne,
Thither his Bountie so much did me bring,
That though he raign'd, yet there was I a King.
There were few Weeks, but some the Channell crost
With sundrie Presents of a wond'rous price,
Some Jewell that him infinitely cost,
Or some rich Robe of excellent device,
That they which saw what he upon me threw,
Well might discerne, some change must needs insue.
And since the Flow me followed in this wise,
The fulnesse I as amply entertayne,
It had beene folly to have seem'd precise,
To take that, which fell on me like the Rayne,
Such as before no Age had ever seene,
And since he was, I thinke, hath seldome beene.
So that, when the bold Barony had found
The cunning us'd in covering of my flight,
That shifted me but to a surer ground,
On which, they vainely had bestow'd their might,
Perceiv'd farre off, that greater perill rose,
Then they could find how fitly to dispose.
Like those that strive to stop some swelling Sourse,
(Whose plentie none can comprehend in bounds)
Which climes above th'Opposers of his course,
And that which should incircle it, surrounds,
That so innated in it selfe is blest,
That 'tis the more, the more it is deprest.
For fearing much the Force I had abroad,
Who knew the way, the Irish hearts to win,
They thought me better here to be bestow'd,
And for the State more safely farre therein,
Where though my spoile they hop'd not to prevent,
Yet could they see the giddy course I went.
Of which they scarsly had conceiv'd the thought,
And did thereto but seemingly descend,
But that the King immediately it caught,
Nor car'd he by it, what they did intend,
Plot what they could, so he thereby might gayne me,
Once in his Court againe to intertayne me.
What is so hard, but Majestie commands,
Yea, and severely humbleth with the Eye?
Whose very Nod acts with a thousand Hands,
In it such Vertue secretly doth lye,
Having t'uphold it, the high power of Fate,
It is Emperious, both o'r Love and Hate.
This King, who no occasion could neglect,
That ought, me to my happinesse might win,
Did with such care my businesses effect,
And ever was so fortunate therein,
That he to passe in little time did bring,
What most Men thought to be a doubtfull thing.
When Posts away with their full Packets went,
Me out of Ireland instantly to call,
Allow'd of by the generall consent,
Although not lik'd of inwardly of all,
Yet 'twas sufficient that it freedome gave me,
But to be here, where he desired to have me.
My proud Sayles swelling with a prosp'rous Wind,
The boyst'rous Seas did homage to mine Eyes,
And much above their usuall course were kind,
All lowring Clouds abandoning the Skyes,
Nothing discern'd in any Starre to feare me,
Fortune her selfe sate at the Helme to stere me.
What time the King a Progresse needs would make
Into North-Wales , His Native Place to see,
Which was indeed, but only for my sake,
Who at West-Chester , knew to meet with Mee,
And there, with all the State He could devise,
To doe Me honour, in the Peoples eyes.
Where, for my Landing, long He did provide,
That nought might want to nourish my Delight,
And at each Lodging as along We ride,
He entertaind Me, with some pleasing sight,
And that the Realme our Friendship might report,
We entred London in this Royall sort.
Which prov'd sharpe Spurres to my untam'd Desire,
Lending the Reines to my lascivious Will,
And put Me forth upon my full Careere,
On places slipperie, and my manage ill,
Small my fore-sight, and over-much my haste,
Which Me, alas, infortunately cast.
King E DWARDS Eare when having at command,
Who ought would have, He must Me entertaine;
And yet before it past my gripple hand,
I shar'd the great'st part to my private gaine,
Nor car'd I what from any I could wring,
So I might Coine into my Coffers bring.
Then daily beg'd I great Monopolies,
Taking the Lands belonging to the Crowne,
Transporting all the best Commodities,
Useful to England , needed of her owne,
And basely sold all Offices, till then:
The due Reward of wel-deserving Men.
And being inconsiderately proud,
Held all things vile that suted not my vaine,
Nothing might passe, but that which I allow'd,
A great opinion to my wit to gaine,
Giving vile Termes and Nick-names of Disgrace,
To Men of great Birth, and of greater Place.
Whereby brake out that execrable Rage,
Which long before had boyled in their Bloud,
Themselves by Oath against Me they engage,
Who thus had all Authoritie with-stood,
And in the Quarrell up their Armes doe take,
Or to marre all, or better it to make.
They durst affirme my Mother was a Witch,
And in the fire condemned burnt to be,
And I her Sonne, so rightly of her pitch,
She had bequeath'd her Sorceries to Me,
Urging it on, for a most certaine thing,
That I by Magicke wrought upon the King.
And into France they charg'd Me to convay
A goodly Table of pure Massie Gold,
A Relike kept in Windsor many a day,
Which to King A RTHUR did belong of old,
Upon whose margent, as they did surmise,
There were ingraven M ERLINS Prophesies.
And by appealing to the Sea of Rome ,
They soone procur'd a Legate to the Land,
With Malediction, by the Churches doome,
Upon that Man which on my part should stand,
The King suspending, should He not consent,
To ratifie the Baronies intent.
Which they to purpose prosp'rously effect,
Then at full strength, to counterpoyse his force,
Having withall the Clergie to direct,
Them the best way, in their resistlesse course,
Till at the last King E DWARD they procure,
By solemne Oath Me ever to abjure.
Th'uncertaine issue of each earthly thing,
Set out most lively in my star-crost State,
That doth remaine in Fortunes managing,
Appearing in my variable Fate:
On Me that frown'd and flatt'red Me so oft,
Casting Me downe, then setting Me aloft.
To Flanders then my present course I cast,
Which as the fair'st, so fittest for my ease:
" That way is saf'st that soonest can be past,
All, not my Friends, that were abroad at Seas,
Such Friends in France , they daily did procure,
That there my Selfe I doubted to secure.
Where though I chang'd my Habit and my Name,
Hoping thereby to live unknowne to any;
Yet swift Report had so divulg'd my Shame,
My hatefull Life was publish'd to too many,
That as I past through every Street along,
I was the Tale of every common Tongue.
From whence I found a secret meanes, to have
Intelligence with my kind Lord the King,
Who fail'd no Mon'th, but He Me notice gave,
What the proud Barons had in managing,
And labour'd then, as He had done before,
Me into England safely to restore.
For which relying on my Soveraignes Love,
To whom as Life I had beene ever deare,
Which ne'r then now, I had more need to proove,
Who strove t'obtaine, if any meane there were,
A Dispensation for His former Oath,
In their despight that thereto seem'd most loth.
Which long debating, We resolv'd at length,
Since I by Marriage strongly was alli'd,
I at this pinch should stand upon my strength,
And should for England , hap what could betyde,
And in a Ship that for my Passage lay,
Thither my Selfe to secretly convay.
Where safely landed on the wished Shore,
With speed to Court I closely Me betooke,
Yet gave the King Intelligence before,
About what time, He there for Me should looke,
Who was devising when I should arrive,
The surest way, my safety to contrive.
Which the Lords finding, whilst their bloud was hot,
That to themselves then only were to trust,
For what before was done, avail'd them not,
And for my sake, they found the King unjust,
Bringing thereby, whilst trifling they doe stand,
Spoile on themselves, and perill on the Land.
Who was so dull, that did not then distaste,
That thus the King His Nobles should neglect?
And those in Court, We for our purpose plac'd,
Gave us just cause their dealings to suspect,
And they that view'd Us with the pleased'st Eye,
Yet at our Actions often look'd awry.
Which made King E DWARD presently provide
A chosen Convoy of His chiefest Friends,
To guard Me safe to Yorke , to be supply'd
With Forraine Succours, and to Scotland sends,
To Warlike B ALIOL , and to Wales , from whence,
He hop'd for Power to frustrate their presence.
But they His Agents, quickly intercept,
Not then to seeke, in so well-knowne a thing,
And both the Marches they so strictly kept,
That none could enter to assist the King,
Only to chastise my abhorred sinne,
Who had the Cause of all these Troubles bin.
Thus like a Ship despoiled of her Sailes,
Shoov'd by the Wind against the streamfull tyde,
This way the one, that way the other hales,
Now tow'rds this Shore, and now tow'rds that doth ryde,
As that poore Vessell's, such my brittle stay,
The neerer Land, the neerer cast away.
Thou Kingdomes Corsive, home-begotten Hate,
In any Limits never that wast bounded,
When didst thou yet seize upon any State,
By Thee that was not utterly confounded?
How many Empires be there that doe rue Thee?
Happie the World was, till too well it knew Thee.
Thus of all succour utterly bereft,
Only some small force that We had at Sea,
For us to trust to, Fortune had us left,
On which our Hopes, upon this Upcast lay,
Which We to hasten speedily doe make,
Our former Courses, forced to forsake.
Our present perill hapning to be so,
That did for aide importunately call,
Wherefore in Yorke , as safest from the Foe,
He left Me to the keeping of the Wall,
Till His Returne Me further aide might give,
Whom more and more, He studied to releeve.
The Barons then from Bedford setting on,
Th' appointed Randy where they gath'red head,
When they had notice that the King was gone,
Tow'rds Yorkeshire with celeritie them sped,
To seize my Person purposed that were,
Whose presence else might make them to forbeare.
When leaving Yorke , to Scarborough I post,
With that small Force, the Citie had to lend Me,
The strongest Fort, that stood upon the Coast,
And of all other likest to defend Me,
Which at the worst, from whence in their Despight,
The Hils at hand might priviledge my Flight.
But they which kept the Countrey round about,
Upon each passage set so watchfull Spies,
Of well-wall'd Yorke that I was scarsly out,
But on their light-Horse after Me they rise,
And suddenly they in upon Me came,
Ere I had time to get into the same.
Thence with intent tow'rds Oxford to convay Me,
When by the way, as Birds doe at the Owle,
Some wondred at Me, some againe did bay me,
As hungrie Wolves at Passengers doe howle:
Each one rejoycing that I thus was caught,
Who on the Land these Miseries had brought.
Conducted thus to Dedington at last,
Where th' Earle of Pembrooke will'd Me to be stay'd,
To understand before they further past,
What by the King could on my side be sayd,
About this Businesse, and tow'rds E DWARD went,
T'acquaint Him with the generall intent.
But th'Earle of Warwicke (lying but too neere)
The Dogge of Arden that I us'd to call,
Who mortall Hatred did Me ever beare,
He whom I most suspected of them all,
Thither repayring with His powerfull Band,
Seized upon Me with a violent hand.
To Warwicke Castle carrying Me along,
(Where He had long desired Me to get)
With Friends and Tenants absolutely strong,
Whom all the puisant Baronie abet,
Which, since occasion offred them such hold,
Hasten my Death by all the meanes they could.
North from the Towne, a mile, or very neere,
A little Hill in publike view doth lye,
That's called Blacklow , of the Dwellers there,
Neere to the ancient Hermitage of G UY ,
To which, the Lords Me as a Traytor led,
And on a Scaffold tooke away my Head.
My Life and Fortunes lively thus exprest,
In the sad Tenor of my Tragique Tale,
Let Me returne to the faire fields of rest,
Thither transported with a prosp'rous gale,
And leave the World my Destinie to view,
Bidding it thus eternally adiew.