287. A Hymn

James Shirley. 1596-1666

O FLY, my Soul! What hangs upon
        Thy drooping wings,
        And weighs them down
With love of gaudy mortal things?

The Sun is now i' the east: each shade
        As he doth rise
        Is shorter made,
That earth may lessen to our eyes.

O be not careless then and play
        Until the Star of Peace
Hide all his beams in dark recess!
Poor pilgrims needs must lose their way,
When all the shadows do increase.

The Oxford Book of English Verse, HTML edition