Katherine Philips

1631 - 1664 / London

To Mrs. M. A. Upon Absence

Tis now since I began to die
Four months, yet still I gasping live;
Wrapp'd up in sorrow do I lie,
Hoping, yet doubting a reprieve.
Adam from Paradise expell'd
Just such a wretched being held.

'Tis not thy love I fear to lose,
That will in spite of absence hold;
But 'tis the benefit and use
Is lost, as in imprison'd gold:
Which though the sum be ne'er so great,
Enriches nothing but conceit.

What angry star then governs me
That I must feel a double smart,
Prisoner to fate as well as thee;
Kept from thy face, link'd to thy heart?
Because my love all love excels,
Must my grief have no parallels?

Sapless and dead as Winter here
I now remain, and all I see
Copies of my wild state appear,
But I am their epitome.
Love me no more, for I am grown
Too dead and dull for thee to own.
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