Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, S. PETER, by JOSEPH BEAUMONT



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S. PETER, by            
First Line: True, 'tis thy time foule nero; thou
Last Line: The way of life & glory streames.
Subject(s): Peter, Saint (C. 64 A.d.)


TRUE, 'tis thy time foule Nero; Thou
Mayst be more then Devill now,
And venture on this Saint, wch Hell
Hath often felt & fear'd: full well
This Work thy monstrous Hand doth fit,
Which blusheth not itself to wet
In thine owne Mothers Heart, & write
The King of Tyrants. just & right
It is ye Emperour should see
His conquerd God revenged bee:
Now thy bruised Simon dies
This other Simons Sacrifice;
It will become Thee Him to slay
Who of thy God hath won ye Day.
Foolish Tyrant, dost Thou know
What Thou art about to doe?
Know'st Thou that Thou takst away
Not thy Tutor Seneca,
But ye Worlds great Master, One
On whom ye education
Of greater Things then Thou depends,
One, whose school it selfe extends
Much further then thy Empire, by
Thy stoutest Eagles wings could fly?
Knowst Thou that thine owne hand shall be
The ladder, by whose Service He
To Heavn shall climbe, who but ev'n now
Thy soaring God pulld downe so low?
Thither shall He climbe & yet
Leave firm & sure his reverend Seat;
For thy proud Rome shall see his Throne
Flourish, when thine is dead & gone.
What though He but a Fisher be?
Illustrious is his Trade, for He
Useth no bait, but what is more
Worth, then this Imperiall store:
His Hook's a noble Crosse, & this
With a Kingdome baited is;
Eternall Crowns are fastned on it;
Blisse & all Heavn hang upon it;
Doe Thou thy Selfe but Bite, & He
Can catch, & thither draw up Thee.
Yet if His Blood be all that thy
Desire does thirst for, He can Die:
He can Die with more delight
Then Thou canst Live: thy fiercest Spight
Can mingle no such deadly Cup
But He can thirst to drink it up,
And find Life in its bottome: He
Counts it but Death to Live wth Thee,
Seing his Lord & Life long since
Was returned home from hence.
And hearty thanks He gives unto
Thy furie, which contrives it so,
That by ye same illustrious step
After his Lord He may goe up.
Had He his choise of all thy store
Of Torments, none would tempt Him more
Then this fair Crosse, wch bounteous Thou
On his Ambition doth bestow,
Who would not halfe so willing be
To climbe thy Royall Throne wth Thee.
This is that Tree, wch reacheth up
To highest Heavns its Noble Top;
Whose boughs through all ye world doe spread,
And a wholesome shadow shed;
Whose foot tramples ye Head of Hell,
And all its envious Powers doth quell:
The Tree, wch bare no fruit but God
When in Calvarie it stood.
Look now how rare Humilitie
Plucks back ye Saint from this fair Tree:
This Altar is too great, He cries,
For so mean a Sacrifice;
My Masters Throne of Torment is
Too Royall for my Worthlessnesse:
Were some Cherub here to die,
This Ingine Him would dignifie;
Alas any unhonourd way
Of Death would serve poor Me to slay;
The best of Crowns, dear Martyrdome
Though in ye meanest Shape it come,
Will bring sufficient Glory. Yet
If needs I must aspire to it,
May I have leave to show that I
Desire'd not in this Pompe to die:
So hang Me that my Head below
Its dying Kisses may bestow
Upon the reverend foot of this
Great Seat my Master once made His.
None but this fashion can agree
With my unequall Dignitie;
When their Kings honours Servants crowne
Tis fit ye upside should be downe.
Thou hast thy Wish, meek Saint, to this
Request ye Tyrant liberall is;
And smiles that He has learnd to day
To Crucifie a new found way.
Now doe thy feet point to ye Place
Whither Thou must straitway passe;
And turned quite away art Thou
Allready from all Things below;
A sweet Advantage by thy new
Torment doth to Thee accrew,
Which with thy humble Project's even
Now Thou lookest downe to Heavn.
Heaven a Place to Thee well knowne
Into whose hand ye Keys were throwne,
A Place wch will to Thee restore
Thy Heart lodgd there so long before;
A Place much higher, Nero, then
He is falln below a Man.
A Place, where Thou shalt meet wth thine
And with Heavns Blisse, ye most Divine
Eyes of JESUS, from whose Beames
The Way of Life & Glory streames.





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