Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, UPON THE KING'S RETURN FROM SCOTLAND, by JOHN CLEVELAND



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UPON THE KING'S RETURN FROM SCOTLAND, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Returned, I'll ne'er believe't; first prove him hence
Last Line: Now he the counterpart comes south to us.
Subject(s): Charles I, King Of England (1600-1649)


RETURNED, I'll ne'er believe't; first prove him hence;
Kings travel by their beams and influence.
Who says the soul gives out her gests, or goes
A flitting progress 'twixt the head and toes?
She rules by omnipresence, and shall we
Deny a prince the same ubiquity?
Or grant he went, and, 'cause the knot was slack,
Girt both the nations with his zodiac,
Yet as the tree at once both upward shoots,
And just as much grows downward to the roots,
So at the same time that he posted thither
By counter-stages he rebounded hither.
Hither and hence at once; thus every sphere
Doth by a double motion interfere;
And when his native form inclines him east,
By the first mover he is ravished west.
Have you not seen how the divided dam
Runs to the summons of her hungry lamb;
But when the twin cries halves, she quits the first?
Nature's commendam must be likewise nursed.
So were his journeys like the spider spun
Out of his bowels of compassion.
Two realms, like Cacus, so his steps transpose,
His feet still contradict him as he goes.
England's returned that was a banished soil.
The bullet flying makes the gun recoil.
Death's but a separation, though endorsed
With spade and javelin; we were thus divorced.
Our soul hath taken wing while we express
The corpse, returning to our principles.
But the Crab-tropic must not now prevail;
Islands go back but when you're under sail.
So his retreat hath rectified that wrong;
Backward is forward in the Hebrew tongue.
Now the Church Militant in plenty rests,
Nor fears, like th' Amazon, to lose her breasts.
Her means are safe; not squeezed until the blood
Mix with the milk and choke the tender brood.
She, that hath been the floating ark, is that
She that's now seated on Mount Ararat.
Quits Charles; our souls did guard him northward thus
Now he the counterpart comes south to us.





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