Nec magis expressi vultus per ahenea signa,
Quam per vatis opus mores, animique, virorum
Clarorum apparent.... HOR.
 ‘Macedonian’: Alexander.
TO A LADY,
FROM WHOM HE RECEIVED THE COPY OF THE POEM ENTITLED ’OF A TREE CUT IN
PAPER,’ WHICH FOR MANY YEARS HAD BEEN LOST.
Nothing lies hid from radiant eyes;
All they subdue become their spies.
Secrets, as choicest jewels, are
Presented to oblige the fair;
No wonder, then, that a lost thought
Should there be found, where souls are caught.
The picture of fair Venus (that
For which men say the goddess sat)
Was lost, till Lely from your book
Again that glorious image took.
If Virtue’s self were lost, we might
From your fair mind new copies write.
All things but one you can restore;
The heart you get returns no more.
Farewell the year! which threaten’d so
The fairest light the world can show.
Welcome the new! whose every day,
Restoring what was snatch’d away
By pining sickness from the fair,
That matchless beauty does repair
So fast, that the approaching spring
(Which does to flow’ry meadows bring
What the rude winter from them tore)
Shall give her all she had before. 10
But we recover not so fast
The sense of such a danger past;
We that esteem’d you sent from heaven,
A pattern to this island given,
To show us what the bless’d do there,
And what alive they practised here,
When that which we immortal thought,
We saw so near destruction brought,
Felt all which you did then endure,
And tremble yet, as not secure. 20
So though the sun victorious be,
And from a dark eclipse set free,
The influence, which we fondly fear,
Afflicts our thoughts the following year.
But that which may relieve our care
Is, that you have a help so near
For all the evil you can prove,
The kindness of your royal love;
He that was never known to mourn,
So many kingdoms from him torn, 30
His tears reserved for you, more dear,
More prized, than all those kingdoms were!
For when no healing art prevail’d,
When cordials and elixirs fail’d,
On your pale cheek he dropp’d the shower,
Revived you like a dying flower.
 ‘Dangerous sickness’: the Queen
of Charles II. These verses belong
to the year 1663.
TO MR KILLIGREW,
UPON HIS ALTERING HIS PLAY, ‘PANDORA,’ FROM A TRAGEDY INTO A COMEDY,
BECAUSE NOT APPROVED ON THE STAGE.