Sir Henry Wotton

1568 - 1639 / England

To A Noble Friend In His Sickness

Untimely Feaver, rude insulting guest,
How didst thou with such unharmonious heat
Dare to distune his well-composed rest;
Whose heart so just and noble stroaks did beat?

What if his Youth and Spirits well may bear
More thick assaults, and stronger siege then this?
We measure not his courage, but our fear:
Not what our selves, but what the Times may miss.

Had not that blood, which thrice his veins did yield,
Been better treasur'd for some glorious day:
At farthest West to paint the liquid field,
And with new Worlds his Masters love to pay?

But let those thoughts, sweet Lord, repose a while,
Tend only now thy vigour to regain;
And pardon these poor Rimes, that would beguile
With mine own grief, some portion of thy pain.
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