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A Collection of Emblemes

Ancient and Moderne: Quickened VVith Metricall Illvstrations, both Morall and Divine: And disposed into Lotteries, That Instruction, and Good Counsell, may bee furthered by an Honest and Pleasant Recreation. By George Wither

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Illvstr. XVI.
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Illvstr. XVI.

[When we observe the Ball, how to and fro]

When to suppresse us, Men intend,
They make us higher to ascend.

When we observe the Ball, how to and fro
The Gamesters force it; we may ponder thus:
That whil'st we live we shall be playd with so,
And that the World will make her Game of us.
Adversities, one while our hearts constraine
To stoope, and knock the Pavements of Despaire;
Hope, like a Whirle-wind mounts us up againe,
Till oft it lose us in the empty ayre.
Sometimes, above the Battlements we looke;
Sometimes, we quite below the Line are tost:
Another-while, against the Hazard strooke,
We, but a little want, of being lost.
Detraction, Envie, Mischief, and Despight,
One Partie make, and watchfully attend
To catch us when we rise to any Height;
Lest we above their hatred should ascend.
Good-Fortune, Praises, Hopes, and Industries,
Doe side-together, and make Play to please us;
But, when by them we thinke more high to rise,
More great they make our Fall, and more disease us.
Yea, they that seeke our Losse, advance our Gaine;
And to our Wishes, bring us oft the nigher:
For, we that else upon the Ground had laine,
Are, by their striking of us lifted higher.
When Balls against the Stones are hardest throwne,
Then highest up into the Aire they fly;
So, when men hurle us (with most fury) downe,
Wee hopefull are to be advanc'd thereby:
And, when they smite us quite unto the Ground,
Then, up to Heav'n, we trust, we shall rebound.