A Warning to False Alchemists


(An alchemical poem by Thomas Rawlin, London, 1611)

All Things from One, and to One.
In the Center Truth, in the Circumference Vanity.
A Magical Enigma!
The omnipotent God in the rotten Mass,
as it were in a Chaos to be despised,
to us Mortals has left all things,
yet they in the Nature of Things are but one.
It is a Mass of Dust, a despicable Thing;
a Fire, an Aquasity; a most amiable Fountain;
it is neither a Stout Captain, nor invincible;
when it is not drawn out of its Cradle.
It is an old Man; it is an Infant; the Lord of all;
it is the red Servant, contrary to the King;
it is the green Lyon; something more sublime
than the King, or Subjects; but fugitive.
It flies, and attracts; the Virgin obeyeth not,
unless the Father provoke her with Many Goads;
then she follows, and much demands
a Husbands company, with whom she cohabits.
She is covered and impregnated with the Embrace,
a clear Water is evacuated out of her Heart
with Blood, wherewith she is raised up,
now dying as it were, and is recreated.
Things bright and clear being so obtained,
the King and Queen being begot together,
being put presently in the Secret Prison,
feed them with heavenly Dew; not Wat’ry things.
Being Dead at length, the Spirit flies away,
washes and purifies the Soul and the Body.
Then a more intense Fire always perpetuates
with a cold Fire; it volatilizes not.
Now no Error follows in the Work,
burn all with a very strong Fire,
bring out at length the Blood, the Soul
after the White King: Then thrice imbibe.
The King being thus known, the Body is the Soul,
and fixt, and permanent, although like Wax;
the Color is not an Accident; but a Substance
reigning in all, with the highest Glory.
Glory to God alone, the Three-In-One.

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