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On the Purification of the Blessed Virgin.
PURE and spotless was the maid,
Although she brought the Lamb.
That she was spotless and obedient.
O make us follow so blest precedent,
And a continued state of sin
Even Him that bled upon the tree.
On Good Friday.
THE Lamb is eaten, and is yet again
The cup is full and mix'd,
And must be drunk:
To this, are draughts to beguile care withal,
Doubled knees, and groans, and cries,
His sad soul sunk Under the heavy pressure of our sin : The pains of death and hell About him dwell.
His Father's burning wrath did make
His very heart, like melting wax, to sweat
Through the pure strainer of his skin:
Bubbling all o'er,
As if the wretched whole were but one door
O Thou, who for our sake
Didst drink up
Remember us, we pray,
The struggling throats of wicked men
Let thy unbounded mercy think
Thou underwent'st this heavy doom, And give us of the well of life to drink.
On the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin.
A WINGED harbinger, from bright heav'n flown, Bespeaks a lodging room
For the mighty King of love,
The spotless structure of a virgin womb,
O'ershadow'd with the wings of the blest dove:
For he was travelling to earth,
But did desire to lay
By the way,
That he might shift his clothes, and be
How good a God have we, who, for our sake,
Man like himself in his own image; now
Eternity took the measure of a span,
And not from man the woman take,
Allelujah! We adore
His name, whose goodness hath no store.
WHAT glorious light!
How bright a sun, after so sad a night,
Does now begin to dawn! Blessed were those eyes,
That did behold
This sun, when he did first unfold
His glorious beams, and now begin to rise:
It was the holy tender sex,
That saw the first ray :
In holy innocence;
Make us to rise again to th' life of grace,
That we may live with thee, and see thy glorious face,
The crown of holy penitence.
On the Day of Ascension.
HE is risen higher, not set:
Did, with his leave, make bold to shroud
When every ray shall be a tongue
That we, the saints among,
On the Feast of Pentecost, or Whitsunday.
TONGUES of fire from heaven descend
To blow it up and make
And give men warning to defend
And all her gifts and graces, slide
LORD, I have sinned: and the black number swells To such a dismal sum,
That, should my stony heart, and eyes,
And this whole sinful trunk, a flood become,
And run to tears, their drops could not suffice,
But thou, my God, hast blood in store,
Yet since the balsam of thy blood,
Teach but my heart and eyes
And then one drop of balsam will suffice.
GREAT God, and just! how canst thou see,
And not, in mercy, set us free!
Poor miserable man! how wert thou born
To serve themselves in thy unhappy fate.