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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 keepe these limbes, her Provinces, from 
					dissolution.

For if the sinewie thread1 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; Except2 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.

John Donne (1572-1631)	P. 1633

 
FOOTNOTES
1 the nerves ; 2 unless ;
 

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