Poems and Extracts/Lines written by Capt. James upon his leaving Charlton Island, where many of his Ship's Crew had died during the winter, which they passed there A.D. 1631-2

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Lines written by Capt. James upon his leaving Charlton Island, where many of his Ship's Crew had died during the winter, which they passed there A. D. 1631-2.


I were unkind unless that I did shed
Before I part some tears upon our Dead:
And when my eyes be dry I will not cease
I heart to pray their bones may rest in peace:
Their better parts, (good souls) I know were given,
With an intent they should return to heaven:
Their lives they spent to the last drop of blood.
Seeking God's glory and their Country's good.
And as a valiant Soldier rather dies.
Than yields his courage to his enemies,10

And stops their way with his hew'd flesh, when death
Hath quite deprived him of his strength and breath;
So have they spent themselves; and here they lie,
A famous mark of our Discovery.
We that survive, perchance may end our days
In some employment meriting no praise,
And in a dunghill rot, when no man names
The memory of us but to our shames.
They have outlived this fear, and their brave ends
Will ever be an honor to their friends.—20
Why drop you so mine eyes? Nay rather pour
My sad departure in a solemn shower.
The winter"'s cold that lately froze our blood.
Now, were it so extreme, might do this good,
As make these tears bright pearls, which I would lay
Tombed safely with you till doom's fatal day:
That in this solitary place, where none
Will ever come to breathe a sigh or groan,

Some remnant might be extant, of the true
And faithful love, I ever tendered you.30
Oh! rest in peace, dear Friends, and let it be
No pride to say, the sometime part of me.
What pain and anguish doth afflict the head.
The heart and stomach, when the limbs are dead.—
So grieved I kiss your graves, resolved to die,
A Foster-Father to your memory.