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Such as no mortals use to tread,
Fit only for Apollo
To play to, for the moon to lead,
And all the stars to follow!
On, blessed youths! for Jove doth pause, Laying aside his graver laws
And at the wedding such a pair,
Each dance is taken for a pray'r, Each song a sacrifice.
More pleasing were those sweet delights,
If ladies mov'd as well as knights;
Run every one of you, and catch
A nymph, in honour of this match,
And whisper boldly in her ear,
Jove will but laugh, if you forswear!
And this day's sins, he doth resolve,
That we his priests should all absolve.
Ye should stay longer if we durst:
Away! alas, that he that first
Gave time wild wings to fly away,
Hath now no power to make him stay!
But tho' these games must needs be play'd,
I would this pair, when they are laid,
And not a creature nigh 'em,
Could catch his scythe as he doth pass,
And cut his wings, and break his glass,
And keep him ever by 'em.
Peace and silence be the guide
To the man, and to the bride!
If there be a joy yet new
In marriage, let it fall on you,
That all the world may wonder!
If we should stay, we should do worse,
And turn our blessing to a curse,
By keeping you asunder.
FROM THE FAITHFUL SHEPHERDESS.
Satyr. Thorough yon same bending plain That flings his arms down to the main, And thro' these thick woods have I run, Whose bottom never kiss'd the sun Since the lusty spring began, All to please my master Pan, Have I trotted without rest To get him fruit; for at a feast He entertains, this coming night, His paramour, the Syrinx bright. But, behold a fairer sight! By that heav'nly form of thine, Brightest fair, thou art divine, Sprung from great immortal race Of the gods; for in thy face Shines more awful majesty, Than dull weak mortality Dare with misty eyes behold,
And live! Therefore on this mould,
Lowly do I bend my knee,
In worship of thy deity.
Deign it, goddess, from my hand,
To receive whate'er this land
From her fertile womb doth send
Of her choice fruits; and but lend
Belief to that the Satyr tells:
Fairer by the famous wells,
To this present day ne'er grew,
Never better nor more true.
Here be grapes, whose lusty blood
Is the learned poets' good,
Sweeter yet did never crown
The head of Bacchus; nuts more brown
Than the squirrel whose teeth crack 'em;
Deign, oh, fairest fair, to take 'em.
For these black-ey'd Driope
Hath often-times commanded me
With my clasped knee to clime:
See how well the lusty time
Hath deck'd their rising cheeks in red,
Such as on your lips is spread.
Here be berries for a queen,
Some be red, some be green;
These are of that luscious meat,
The great god Pan himself doth eat:
All these, and what the woods can yield,
The hanging mountain, or the field,
I freely offer, and ere long
Will bring you more, more sweet and strong;
Till when humbly leave I take,
Lest the great Pan do awake,
That sleeping lies in a deep glade,
Under a broad beech's shade:
I must go, I must run
Swifter than the fiery-sun.
River God. What pow'rful charms my streams do
Back again unto their spring,
With such force, that I their God,
Three times striking with my rod,
Could not keep them in their ranks!
My fishes shoot into the banks;
There's not one that stays and feeds,
All have hid them in the weeds.
Here's a mortal almost dead,
Fall'n into my river-head,
Hallow'd so with many a spell,
That till now none ever fell.
'Tis a female young and clear,
Cast in by some ravisher.
See upon her breast a wound,
On which there is no plaister bound,
Yet she's warm, her pulses beat,
'Tis a sign of life and heat.
If thou be'st a virgin pure,
I can give a present cure:
Take a drop into thy wound,
From my watery locks, more round
Than orient pearl, and far more pure
Than unchaste flesh may endure.
God. Fear not him that succour'd thee:
I am this fountain's God! Below
My waters to a river grow,
And 'twixt two banks with osiers set,
That only prosper in the wet,
Thro' the meadows do they glide,
Wheeling still on ev'ry side,
Sometimes winding round about,
To find the even'st channel out.
And if thou wilt go with me,
Leaving mortal company,
In the cool stream shalt thou lie,
Free from harm as well as I:
I will give thee for thy food
No fish that useth in the mud!
But trout and pike, that love to swim
Where the gravel from the brim
Thro' the pure streams may be seen:
Orient pearl fit for a queen,
Will I give, thy love to win,
And a shell to keep them in:
Not a fish in all my, brook
That shall disobey thy look,
But, when thou wilt, come sliding by,
And from thy white hand take a fly.
And to make thee understand
How I can my waves command,
They shall bubble whilst I sing,
Sweeter than the silver string.
Do not fear to put thy feet
Naked in the river sweet;
Think not leech, or newt, or toad,
Will bite thy foot, when thou hast trod;
Nor let the water rising high,
As thou wad'st in, make thee cry
And sob; but ever live with me,
And got a wave shall trouble thee!
All ye woods, and trees, and bow'rs,
All ye virtues and ye pow'rs
That inhabit in the lakes,
In the pleasant springs or brakes,
Move your feet
To our sound, Whilst we greet All this ground,
FROM ALEXANDER AND CAMPASPE.
Cupid and my Campaspe play'd
At cards for kisses, Cupid paid;
He stakes his quiver, bow, and arrows;
His mother's doves, and team of sparrows;
Loses them too; then down he throws
The coral of his lip, the rose
Growing on's cheek, (but none knows how,)
With these, the crystal of his brow,
And then the dimple of his chin;
All these did my Campaspe win.
At last he set her both his eyes,
She won, and Cupid blind did rise.
O Love! has she done this to thee?
What shall, alas! become of me?
What bird so sings, yet so does wail?
O'tis the ravish'd nightingale.
Jug, jug, jug, jug, terue, she cries,
And still her woes at midnight rise.
Brave prick song! who is't now we hear?
None but the lark so shrill and clear;
How at heaven's gates she claps her wings,
The morn not waking till she sings.
Hark, hark, with what a pretty throat,
Poor Robin Redbreast tunes his note;
Hark how the jolly cuckoos sing
Cuckoo to welcome in the spring,
Cuckoo to welcome in the spring.
Drink to me only with thine eyes,
And I will pledge with mine;
Or leave a kiss but in the cup,
And I'll not look for wine.
The thirst that from the soul doth rise,
Doth ask a drink divine:
But might I of Jove's nectar sup,
I would not change for thine.
I sent thee late a rosy wreath,
Not so much honouring thee,
As giving it a hope, that there
It could not withered be.
But thou thereon didst only breathe,
And sent'st it back to me :
Since when it grows, and smells, I swear,
Not of itself, but thee.
FROM A CELEBRATION OF CHARIS. See the chariot at hand here of Love, Wherein my lady rideth! Each that draws is a swan or a dove,
And well the car Love guideth.
As she goes, all hearts do duty
Unto her beauty,
And enamour'd, do wish so they might But enjoy such a sight,
That they still were to run by her side,
Thorough swords, thorough seas, whither she would
Do but look on her eyes, they do light
All that Love's world compriseth!
Do but look on her hair, it is bright
As Love's star when it riseth!
Do but mark, her forehead's smoother
Than words that soothe her!
And from her arched brows, such a grace
Sheds itself through the face,
As alone there triumphs to the life
All the gain, all the good of the elements' strife.
Have you seen but a bright lily grow,
Before rude hands have touch'd it? Ha' you mark'd but the fall o' the snow Before the soil hath smutch'd it?
HYMN TO DIANA, IN CYNTHIA'S REVELS.
Queen and huntress, chaste and fair,
Now the sun is laid to sleep,
Seated in thy silver car,
State in wonted manner keep.
Hesperus entreats thy light,
Goddess excellently bright.
Earth, let not thy envious shade
Dare itself to interpose :
Cynthia's shining orb was made
Heaven to clear, when day did close;
Bless us then with wished sight,
Goddess excellently bright.
Lay thy bow of pearl apart,
And thy crystal shining quiver;
Give unto the flying hart
Space to breathe, how short soever :
Thou that mak'st a day of night,
Goddess excellently bright.
If he be amongst ye, say; He is Venus' runaway.
She that will but now discover
Where the winged wag doth hover,
Shall to-night receive a kiss,
How, or where herself would wish:
But, who brings him to his mother,
Shall have that kiss and another.
He hath of marks about him plenty :
You shall know him among twenty.
All his body is a fire,
And his breath a flame entire,
That being shot, like lightning in,
Wounds the heart, but not the skin.
At his sight, the sun hath turned,
Neptune in the waters burned:
Hell hath felt a greater heat:
Jove himself forsook his seat:
From the centre to the sky,
Are his trophies reared high.
Wings he hath, which though ye clip,
He will leap from lip to lip,
Over liver, lights, and heart,
But not stay in any part;
And, if chance his arrow misses,
He will shoot himself, in kisses.
He doth bear a golden bow,
And a quiver hanging low,
Full of arrows that outbrave
Dian's shafts: where, if he have
Any head more sharp than other,
With that first he strikes his mother.
Still the fairest are his fuel,
When his days are to be cruel,
Lovers hearts are all his food;
And his baths their warmest blood,
Nought but wounds his hand doth season,
And he hates none like to Reason.
Trust him not: his words, though sweet,
Seldom with his heart do meet.
All his practice is deceit ;
Every gift it is a bait ;
Not a kiss but poison bears;
And most treason in his tears.
Idle minutes are his reign;
Then the straggler makes his gain,
By presenting maids with toys,
And would have ye think 'em joys:
"Tis th' ambition of the elf
To have all childish as himself.
If by these ye please to know him,
Beauties, be not nice, but show him.
Though ye had a will to hide him,
Now, we hope, ye'll not abide him.
Since you hear his falser play,
And that he's Venus' runaway.
Sleep, silence child, sweet father of soft rest,
Prince whose approach peace to all mortals brings,
Indifferent host to shepherds and to kings,
Sole comforter of minds which are opprest;
Lo by thy charming rod all breathing things
Lie slumb'ring, with forgetfulness possest,
And yet o'er me to spread thy drowsy wings
Thou spar'st (alas!) who cannot be thy guest.
Since I am thine, O come, but with that face
To inward light which thou art wont to show,
With fained solace ease a true-felt woe;
Or if, deaf god, thou do deny that grace,
Come as thou wilt, and what thou wilt bequeath:
I long to kiss the image of my death.
Fair moon, who with thy cold and silver shine
Makes sweet the horror of the dreadful night,
Delighting the weak eye with smiles divine,
Which Phoebus dazzles with his too much light;
Bright queen of the first heaven, if in thy shrine
By turning oft, and heaven's eternal might,
Thou hast not yet that once sweet fire of thine
Endymion, forgot, and lover's plight:
If cause like thine may pity breed in thee,
And pity somewhat else to it obtain,
Since thou hast power of dreams as well as he
Who paints strange figures in the slumb'ring brain:
Now while she sleeps in doleful guise her show
These tears, and the black map of all my woe.
Dear quirister, who from those shadows sends,
Ere that the blushing morn dare show her light,
Such sad lamenting strains, that night attends,
(Become all ear), stars stay to hear thy plight;
If one whose grief even reach of thought transcends,
Who ne'er (not in a dream) did taste delight,
May thee importune who like case pretends,
And seems to joy in woe, in woe's despight:
Tell me (so may thou fortune milder try,
And long long sing) for what thou thus complains,
Since winter's gone, and sun in dappled sky
Enamour'd smiles on woods and flow'ry plains?
The bird, as if my question did her move,
With trembling wings sigh'd forth, I love, I love.
Alexis, here she stay'd among these pines;
Sweet hermitress she did alone repair:
Here did she spread the treasure of her hair,
More rich than that brought from the Colchian mines.
Here sat she by those musket eglantines,
The happy flow'rs seem yet the print to bear,
Her voice did sweeten here my sugar'd lines,
To which winds, trees, beasts, birds, did lend an ear.
She here me first perceiv'd, and here a morn
Of bright carnations did o'erspread her face:
Here did she sigh, here first my hopes were born,
Here first I got a pledge of promis'd grace:
But ah! what serves't t'have been made happy so, Since passed pleasures double but new woe.
My lute, be as thou wert when thou did grow With thy green mother in some shady grove, When immelodious winds but made thee move, And birds their ramage did on thee bestow. Since that dear voice which did thy sounds approve, Which wont in such harmonious strains to flow, Is reft from earth to tune those spheres above, What art thou but a harbinger of woe? Thy pleasing notes be pleasing notes no more, But orphans' wailings to the fainting ear,
Each stroke a sigh, each sound draws forth a tear,
For which be silent as in woods before :
Or if that any hand to touch thee deign,
Like widow'd turtle still her loss complain.
Sweet bird, that sing'st away the early hours,
Of winters past or coming void of care,
Well pleased with delights which present are,
Fair seasons, budding sprays, sweet-smelling flow'rs:
To rocks, to springs, to rills, from leavy bow'rs
Thou thy Creator's goodness dost declare,
And what dear gifts on thee he did not spare,
A stain to human sense in sin that low'rs.
What soul can be so sick, which by thy songs
(Attir'd in sweetness) sweetly is not driven
Quite to forget earth's turmoils, spites and wrongs,
And lift a reverend eye and thought to heaven?
Sweet, artless songster, thou my mind dost raise
To airs of spheres, yea, and to angels lays.
THE PASSIONATE SHEPHERD.
Come live with me, and be my love, And we will all the pleasures prove That hills and valleys, dale and field, And all the craggy mountains yield. There will we sit upon the rocks, And see the shepherds feed their flocks; By shallow rivers, to whose falls Melodious birds sing madrigals. There will I make thee beds of roses, With a thousand fragrant posies; cap of flowers, and a kirtle, Embroider'd all with leaves of myrtle; A gown made of the finest wool, Which from our pretty lambs we pull; Slippers lin'd choicely for the cold, With buckles of the purest gold; A belt of straw and ivy buds, With coral clasps and amber studs: And if these pleasures may thee move, Then live with me, and be my love. The shepherd swains shall dance and sing, For thy delight, each May morning: If these delights thy mind may move, Then live with me, and be my love.
Shall I like an hermit dwell,
On a rock, or in a cell-
Calling home the smallest part
That is missing of my heart,
To bestow it where I may
Meet a rival every day?
If she undervalues me,
What care I how fair she be?
Were her tresses angel-gold;
If a stranger may be bold,
To convert them to a braid,
And, with little more a-do,
Work them into bracelets too :
If the mine be grown so free,
What care I how rich it be?
Were her hands as rich a prize,
As her hairs, or precious eyes;
If she lay them out to take
Kisses for good-manner's sake,
And let every lover skip
From her hand unto her lip:
If she seem not chaste to me,
What care I how chaste she be?
No; she must be perfect snow,
In effect as well as show,
Warming but as snow-balls do,
Not like fire by burning too:
But when she, by change, hath got
To her heart a second lot;
Then, if others share with me,
Farewell her, whate'er she be!
A VISION UPON THE CONCEIT OF THE FAERY QUEEN.
Methought I saw the grave where Laura lay, Within that temple, where the vestal flame Was wont to burn, and passing by that way To see that buried dust of living fame, Whose tomb fair love, and fairer virtue kept, All suddenly I saw the Faery Queen : At whose approach the soul of Petrarch wept, And from thenceforth those graces were not seen, For they this Queen attended, in whose stead Oblivion laid him down on Laura's hearse. Hereat the hardest stones were seen to bleed, And groans of buried ghosts the heavens did pierce : When Homer's spright did tremble all for grief, And curst the access of that celestial thief.
DEATH'S FINAL CONQUEST.
The glories of our birth and state
Are shadows, not substantial things;