Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, CAELIA'S FALL, by CHARLES COTTON



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CAELIA'S FALL, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Caelia, my fairest caelia, fell
Last Line: Before, or since my caelia fell.
Subject(s): Love


I

CAELIA, my fairest Caelia, fell,
Caelia, than the fairest, fairer,
Caelia (with none I must compare her)
That all alone is all in all,
Of what we fair, and modest call,
Caelia, white as Alabaster,
Caelia, than Diana chaster,
This fair, fair Caelia, grief to tell,
This fair, this modest, chaste one fell.

II

My Caelia, sweetest Caelia, fell,
As I have seen a snow-white dove
Decline her bosom from above,
And down her spotless body fling
Without the motion of the wing,
Till she arrest her seeming fall
Upon some happy pedestal:
So soft this sweet, I love so well,
This sweet, this dove-like Caelia, fell.

III

Caelia, my dearest Caelia fell,
As I have seen a melting star
Drop down its fire from its sphere,
Rescuing so its glorious sight
From that paler snuff of light:
Yet is a star bright and entire,
As when 'twas wrapp'd in all that fire:
So bright this dear, I love so well,
This dear, this star-like Caelia fell.

IV

And yet my Caelia did not fall
As grosser earthly mortals do,
But stoop'd, like Phoebus, to renew
Her lustre by her morning rise,
And dart new beauties in the skies,
Like a white dove, she took her flight,
And like a star, she shot her light;
This dove, this star, so lov'd of all,
My Fair, Dear, Sweetest, did not fall.

V

But, if you'll say my Caelia fell,
Of this I'm sure, that, like the dart
Of Love it was, and on my heart;
Poor heart alas! wounded before,
She needed not have hurt it more:
So absolute a conquest she
Had gain'd before of it, and me,
That neither of us have been well
Before, or since my Caelia fell.





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