John Donne

The Funerall


Who ever comes to shroud me, do not harme
       Nor question much
That subtile wreath of haire, which crowns my arme;
The mystery, the signe you must not touch,
        For'tis my outward Soule,
Viceroy to that, which then to heaven being gone,
       Will leave this to controule,
And keep these limbes, her Provinces, from dissolution.

For if the sinewie thread my braine lets fall
       Through every part,
Can tye those parts, and make mee one of all;
These haires which upward grew, and strength and art
       Have from a better braine,
Can better do'it; Except she meant that I
        By this should know my pain,
As prisoners then are manacled, when they'are condemn'd to die.

What ere shee meant by'it, bury it with me,
        For since I am
Loves martyr, it might breed idolatrie,
If into others hands these Reliques came;
        As'twas humility
To afford to it all that a Soule can doe,
        So,'tis some bravery,
That since you would save none of mee, I bury some of you.

        14.Except: unless.
       23.bravery: bravado, spirit.


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