On a Mourning Beauty

Upon the hill of sad melancholy,1
I did a silent mourning beauty spy,2
Still as the night; not one3 articulate noise
Did once rise up, shut close from th’light4 of joys,
Only a wind of sighs, which did5 arise                                          5
From the deep cave, the heart, wherein it6 lies.
A veil of sadness o’er7 her face was flung,
Sorrow, a mantle black, about her hung.
Her leaning head upon her hand did rest;
The other hand was laid upon the breast.                                  10
Her eyes did humbly8 bow towards the ground;
Their object, th’earth, was9 in her eyes quite drowned.
From her soft heart a spring of tears did rise,
Which ran10 from the two fountains of her eyes,
And where those show’rs did fall, the flow’rs which11 sprung 15
No comfort gave;12 their heads for grief down hung.
Yet did the stars shine bright as tapers by;
Shadows of light did sit as mourners nigh.
At last the gods did pity her sad fate,
Her to a shining comet did13 translate.                                       20

  1. sad Melancholy,] Melancholy sate 1653
  2. I did a silent mourning beauty spy,] A Mourning Beauty; but no word she spake. 1653
  3. Still as the night; not one] Silent as night, where no 1653
  4. th’light] light 1653
  5. did] doth 1653
  6. it] those 1653
  7. A veil of sadness o’er] Sadnesse, as a Vaile, over 1653
  8. humbly] humble 1653
  9. Their object, th’earth, was] The Earth the object 1653
  10. ran] run 1653, 1664, 1668
  11. show’rs did fall, the flow’rs which] Showers fell, Flowers up 1653
  12. gave;] give, 1653
  13. Her to a shining comet did] And to a Shining Comet Her 1664; And to a Shining-Comet, her 1668