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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. V.


Illvstr. V.

[Marke well this Emblem; and, (when in a thread]

Repent, or God will breake the thread,
By which, thy doome hangs o're thy head.

Marke well this Emblem; and, (when in a thread,
You see the Globe, there, hang above their head,
Who in securitie, beneath it sit)
Observe likewise, the Knife, that threatens it;
The smallnesse of the Twine; and, what a death
Would follow, should it fall on those beneath:
And (having well observ'd it) mind, I pray,
That, which the word about it, there, doth say:
For, it includes a Caveat, which wee need
To entertaine, with a continuall heed.
Though few consider it, wee finde it thus
(Throughout our lives) with ev'ry one of us.
Destruction hangeth in a single thread,
Directly over every Sinner's head.
That Sentence is gone forth, by which wee stand
Condemn'd to suffer death. The dreadfull hand,
Of God's impartiall Iustice, holds a Knife,
Still ready, to cut off our thread of life;
And, 'tis his mercie, that keepes up the Ball
From falling, to the ruine of us all.
Oh! let us minde, how often wee have bin,
Ev'n in the very act of Deadly-sinne,
Whilst this hung over us; and, let us praise,
And love him, who hath yet prolong'd our dayes:
Yea, let our thankfulnesse, bring forth such fruit,
As, to the benefit may somewhat suit:
For, though a sudden Death may not ensue,
Yet, (since Times Axe, doth every minute hew
The Root of Life) the Tree, e're long, must fall;
And, then perhaps, too late, repent wee shall.