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Poems, and phancies

written By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, And Excellent Princess The Lady Marchioness of Newcastle [i.e. Margaret Cavendish]. The Second Impression, much Altered and Corrected

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The Hunting of the Hare.

Betwixt two Ridges of Plowd-land sat Wat,
Whose Body press'd to th'Earth, lay close, and squat,
His Nose upon his two Fore-feet did lye,
With his gray Eyes he glared Obliquely;
His Head he always set against the Wind,
His Tail when turn'd, his Hair blew up behind,
And made him to get Cold; but he being Wise,
Doth keep his Coat still down, so warm he lies:
Thus rests he all the Day, till th'Sun doth Set,
Then up he riseth his Relief to get,
And walks about, untill the Sun doth Rise,
Then coming back in's former Posture lies.


At last poor Wat was found, as he there lay,
By Huntsmen, which came with their Dogs that way
Whom seeing, he got up, and fast did run,
Hoping some ways the Cruel Dogs to shun;
But they by Nature had so quick a Sent,
That by their Nose they Trac'd what way he went,
And with their deep wide Mouths set forth a Cry,
Which answer'd was by Echo in the Sky;
Then Wat was struck with Terrour and with Fear,
Seeing each Shadow thought the Dogs were there,
And running out some Distance from their Cry,
To hide himself, his Thoughts he did imploy;
Under a Clod of Earth in Sand-pit wide
Poor Wat sat close, hoping himself to hide,
There long he had not been, but strait in's Ears
The winding Horns and crying Dogs he hears;
Then starting up with fear, he Leap'd, and such
Swift speed he made, the Ground he scarce did touch;
Into a great thick Wood strait ways he got,
And underneath a broken Bough he Sat,
Where every Leaf, that with the Wind did shake
Brought him such Terrour, that his Heart did Ake;
That place he left, to Champain Plains he went,
Winding about, for to deceive their Sent,
And while they Snuffling were to find his Track,
Poor Wat being weary, his swift Pace did slack;
On his two hinder Legs for ease he Sat,
His Fore-feet rubb'd his Face from Dust and Sweat,
Licking his Feet, he wip'd his Ears so clean,
That none could tell that Wat had Hunted been;
But casting round about his fair gray Eyes,
The Hounds in full Career he near him 'Spies,


To Wat it was so Terrible a Sight,
Fear gave him Wings and made his Body light;
Though he was Tyr'd before by Running long,
Yet now his Breath he never felt more Strong;
Like those that Dying are, think Health returns,
When 'tis but a faint Blast which Life out-burns;
For Spirits seek to Guard the Heart about,
Striving with Death, but Death doth quench them out.
The Hounds so fast came on, and with such Cry,
That he no hopes had left, nor help could 'spy;
With that the Winds did pitty poor VVat's Case,
And with their Breath the Sent blew from that place;
Then every Nose was busily imploy'd,
And every Nostril was set Open wide,
And every Head did seek a several way,
To find the Grass or Track where the Sent lay;
For Witty Industry is never Slack,
'Tis like to Witch-craft, and brings lost things back:
But though the VVind had tied the Sent up close,
A busie Dog thrust in his snuffling Nose
And drew it out, with that did fore-most run,
Then Horns blew Loud, the rest to follow on:
The great slow Hounds their Throats did set a Base,
The Fleet, swift Hounds, as Tenours next in place,
The little Beagles did a Treble Sing,
And through the Air their Voices round did Ring,
VVhich made such Confort as they Ran along,
That, had they Spoken words, 't had been a Song;
The Horns kept time, the Men did shout for Joy,
And seem'd most Valiant, poor Wat to Destroy;
Spurring their Horses to a full Career,
Swom Rivers deep, Leap'd ditches without fear,


Indanger'd Life and Limbs, so fast they'ld Ride;
Only to see how patiently VVat Dy'd;
At last the Dogs so near his Heels did get,
That their sharp Teeth they in his Breech did set;
Then Tumbling down he fell, with weeping Eyes
Gave up his Ghost; and thus poor Wat he Dyes.
Men hooping Loud, such Acclamations made,
As if the Devil they Imprisoned had,
When they but did a shiftless Creature Kill;
To Hunt, their needs no Valiant Souldiers Skill:
But Men do think that Exercise and Toil,
To keep their Health, is best, which makes most Spoil,
Thinking that Food and Nourishment so good,
Which doth proceed from others Flesh and Blood.
When they do Lions, Wolves, Bears, Tigres see
Kill silly Sheep, they say, they Cruel be,
But for themselves all Creatures think too few,
For Luxury, wish God would make more New;
As if God did make Creatures for Mans meat,
And gave them Life and Sense for Man to Eat,
Or else for Sport or Recreations sake
For to Destroy those Lives that God did make,
Making their Stomacks Graves, which full they fill
With Murther'd Bodies, which in Sport they Kill;
Yet Man doth think himself so Gentle and Mild,
When of all Creatures he's most Cruel, Wild,
Nay, so Proud, that he only thinks to Live,
That God a God-like Nature him did give,
And that all Creatures for his Sake alone
Were made, for him to Tyrannize upon.