An Apology

By Anne Bradstreet

To finish what’s begun, was my intent,
    My thoughts and my endeavours thereto bent;
    Essays I many made but still gave out,
    The more I mus’d, the more I was in doubt:
    The subject large my mind and body weak,
    With many moe discouragements did speak.
    All thoughts of further progress laid aside,
    Though oft perswaded, I as oft deny’d,
    At length resolv’d, when many years had past,
    To prosecute my story to the last;
    And for the same, I hours not few did spend,
    And weary lines (though lanke) I many pen’d:
    But ‘fore I could accomplish my desire,
    My papers fell a prey to th’ raging fire.
    And thus my pains (with better things) I lost,
    Which none had cause to wail, nor I to boast.
    No more I’le do sith I have suffer’d wrack,
    Although my Monarchies their legs do lack:
    Nor matter is’t this last, the world now sees,
    Hath many Ages been upon his knees.

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