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The Atomic Poems of Margaret (Lucas) Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, from her Poems, and Fancies, 1653, an electronic edition. Edited with an introduction by Leigh Tillman Partington

by Margaret Cavendish [Newcastle, Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of, 1624?-1674]

date: 1653
source publisher:
collection: Early Modern through the 18th Century

Table of Contents

<< Poem Poem >>
Cavendish, Margaret (Lucas).

All things last, or dissolve, according to the Composure of Atomes.


THose Atomes loosely joyn'd, do not remaine
So long as those, which Closenesse do maintaine.
Those make all things i'th World ebb, and flow;
According as the moving Atomes go.
Others in Bodies, they do joyne so close, [5]
As in long time, they never stir, nor loose:
And some will joyne so close, and knit so fast,
As of unstir'd, they would for ever last.
In smallest Vegetables, loosest Atomes lye,
Which is the reason, they so quickly dye. [10]
In Animals, much closer they are laid,
Which is the cause, Life is the longer staid.
Some Vegetables, and Animals do joyne
In equall strength, if Atomes so combine.
But Animals, where Atomes close lay in, [15]
Are stronger, then some Vegetables thin.
But in Vegetables, where Atomes do stick fast,
As in strong Trees, the longer they do last.
In Minerals, they are so hard wedg'd in,
No space they leave for Motion to get in: [20]
Being Pointed all, the closer they do lye,
Which make them not like Vegetables dye.
Those Bodies, where loose Atomes most move in,
Are Soft, and Porous, and many times thin.
Those Porous Bodies never do live long, [25]
For why, loose Atomes never can be strong.
There Motion having power, tosses them about,
Keeps them from their right places, so Life goes out.