William Cartwright (September 1, 1611 – November 29, 1643) was an English dramatist and churchman.
NO PLATONIC LOVE
Tell me no more of minds embracing minds,
And hearts exchang’d for hearts;
That spirits spirits meet, as winds do winds,
And mix their subt’lest parts;
That two unbodied essences may kiss,
And then like Angels, twist and feel one Bliss.
I was that silly thing that once was wrought
To practice this thin love;
I climb’d from sex to soul, from soul to thought;
But thinking there to move,
Headlong I rolled from thought to soul, and then
From soul I lighted at the sex again.
As some strict down-looked men pretend to fast,
Who yet in closets eat;
So lovers who profess they spirits taste,
Feed yet on grosser meat;
I know they boast they souls to souls convey,
Howe’r they meet, the body is the way.
Come I will undeceive thee, they that tread
Those vain aerial ways,
Are like young heirs and alchemists misled
To waste their wealth and days,
For searching thus to be for ever rich,
They only find a med’cine for the itch.
TO CHLOE: WHO FOR HIS SAKE WISHES HERSELF YOUNGER
There are two births; the one when light
First strikes the new awaken’d sense;
The other when two souls unite,
And we must count our life from thence:
When you loved me and I loved you
Then both of us were born anew.
Love then to us new souls did give
And in those souls did plant new powers;
Since when another life we live,
The breath we breathe is his, not ours:
Love makes those young whom age doth chill,
And whom he finds young keeps young still.