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Thy beauty, my lovo, exceedeth supposes; Thy hair is a nettle for the nicest roses.
Mon dieu, aide moi!
IK doncje icrai unjeune roif
THE PALMER'S VERSES.
In greener years, whenas my greedy thoughts
My feeble wit, that then prevailed noughts,
And I in folly's bonds fulfill'd with crime,
At last unloos'd, thus spied my loss of time.
As in his circular and ceaseless ray
Refresh'd by presence of the eye of day,
So love in me, conspiring my decay,
With endless fire my heodlcss bosom burns,
And from the end of my aspiring sin
My paths of error hourly do begin.
When in the Ram the sun renews his beams,
That waits relief from his refreshing gleams,
Do leap for joy and lap the silver streams:
All heifer-like, with wanton horn I rlay'd,
And by my will my wit to love betray'd.
When Phoebus with Europa's bearer bides,
The labourer to the fields his plough-swains
When prime of years, that many errors hides,
I blindfold walk'd, disdaining to behold
That life doth vade,* and young men must be old.
When in the hold, whereas the Twins do rest, Proud Phlegon, breathing fire, doth post amain,
The trees with leaves, the earth with flowers is drest: When I in pride of years, with peevish brain,
Presum'd too far, and made fond love my guest, With frosts of care my flowers were nipt amain:
In height of weal who bears a careless heart,
Repents too late his over-foolish part.
When in restival Cancer's gloomy bower
The air is calm, the birds at every stowre*
When I was first enthrall'd in Cupid's power,
Singing for joy to see me captive thrall
To him, whose gains are grief, whose comfort small.
When, in the height of his meridian walk,
The riping corn grows yellow in the stalk:
Mask'd with delights of folly was my talk,
In lust I sow'd, my fruit was loss of time;
My hopes were proud, and yet my body slime.
When in the Virgin's lap earth's comfort sleeps, Bating the fury of his burning eyes,
Both corn and fruits are firm'd,and comfort creeps
When age at last his chief dominion keeps,
What love and scant foresight did make me sow
In youthful years, is ripen'd now in woe.
When in the Balance Daphne's leman J blins,§
When I at last consider'd on my sins,
I cast my count, and reason now begins
Which weeping wish a better way to find,
Or else for ever to the world be blind.
* fade] i. o. fado.
* rtowre] See note *, p. 290, sec. coL
When with the Soorpiou proud Apollo plays, The vines are trod and carried to their press,
The woods are fell'd 'gainst winter's sharp affrays:
I gan repair my ruins and decays,
Claiming from time and age no good but this,
To see my 6in, and sorrow for my 'niiss-t
Whenas the Archer in his winter hold,
The ploughman sows and tills his labour"d mould:
How love in youth hath grief for gladness sold, The seeds of shame I from my heart remove,
And in their steads I set down plants of grace,
And with repent bewail + my youthful race,
When he that in Eurotas' Bilver glide
The days grow short, then hastes the winter-tide; The sun with sparing lights doth seem to mourn;
Grey is the green, tho flowers their beauty hide: Whenas I see that I to death was born,
My strength decay'd, my grave already drest,
I count my life my loss, my death my best.
When with Aquarius Phoebe's brother stays,
Cold frost and snow tho pride of earth betrays:
Reason sits down, and bids me count my days, And pray for peace, and blame my froward
In depth of grief, in this distress I cry, [will;
Peccavi, Domine, mitercre mti 1
When in the Fishes' mansion Phoebus dwells,
When old in years, my want my death foretells, My thoughts and prayers to heavon are whole addrest;
Repentance youthly || folly quite expells;
That young in zeal, long beaten with my rod,
I may grow old to wisdom and to God.
* judgment] The 4to. "iudgeuicnts."
t 'mite} For atntii, i. e. fault.
J baciiU] The 4to. "bewailde."
§ bain] i. c. bathe.
II youUdt/] The4to. "youth by."
THE MOURNING GARMENT.
THE DESCRIPTION OF THE SHEPHERD
AND HIS WIFE
It was near a thicky shade,
That broad leaves of beech had made,
Joining all their tops so nigh,
That scarce Phoobus in could pry,
To see if lovers in the thick
Could dally with a wanton trick;
Where sat the swain and his wife,
Sporting in that pleasing life,
That Coridon commendeth Bo,
All other lives to overgo.
He and she did sit and keep
Flocks of kids and folds of sheep:
He upon his pipe did play;
She tun'J voice unto his lay,
And, for you might her huswife know,
Voice did sing and fingers sow.
He was young: his coat was green,
With welts of white seam'd between,
Turned over with a flap
That breast and bosom in did wrap,
Skirts side * and plighted f free.
Seemly hanging to his knee:
A whittle with a silver chape:
Cloak was russet, and the capo
Served for a bonnet oft
To shroud him from the wet aloft:
A leather scrip of colour red,
With a button on the head.
A bottle full of country whig*
By the shepherd's side did lig; §
And in a little bush hard by,
There the shepherd's dog did lie,
Who, while his master gan to sleep,
Well could watch both kids and sheep.
The shepherd was a frolic swain;
For though his 'parel was but plain,
Yet doonjl the authors soothly say,
His colour was both fresh and gay,
And in their writs plain discuss,
Fairer was not Tityrus,
Nor Menaleas, whom they call
The alderliefest H swain of all.
Seeming ** him was his wife,
Both in line and in life:
Fair she was as fair might be,
Like the roses on the tree;
Buxom, blithe, and young, I ween,
Beauteous like a summer's queen,
For her cheekB were ruddy-hu'd,
As if lilies were iinbru'd
With drops of blood, to make the white
Please the eye with more delight:
Love did lie within her eyes
In ambush for some wanton prize.
A liefer * lass than this had been
Coridon had never seen,
Nor was Phillis, that fair may.t
Half so gaudy or so gay.
She wore a chaplet on her head;
Her cassock was of scarlet red,
Long and large, as straight as bent:
Her middle was both small and gent;
A neck as white as whales-bone,
Compass'd with a lace of stone.
Fine she was, and fair she was,
Brighter than the brightest glass;
Such a shepherd's wife as she
Was not more in Thessaly.
THE SHEPHERD'S WIFE'S SONO.
Ah, what is love? It is a pretty thing,
And sweeter too,
Ah then, ah then,
His flocks are folded, he comes home at night,
And merrier too,
Ah then, ah then,
He kisseth first, then sits as blithe to eat
• liefer] i. o. more dear, moro agreeable. t mtijf] i. c. maid.
} Where] L e. Whereas. .
; do] The 4to. omits this word of the burden in all tho stanzas except the first.
For kings have often fears when they do sup,
Ah then, ah then,
To bed he goes, as wanton then, I ween,
More wanton too,
Ah then, ah then,
Upon his couch of straw he sleeps as sound,
More sounder too,
Ah then, ah then,
Thus with his wife he spends the year, as blithe
And blither too,
Ah then, ah then,
HEXAMETRA ALEXIS IN LAUDEM
Oft have I heard my lief Coridon report on a
love-day, When bonny maids do meet with the swains in
the valley by Tempe, How bright-cy'd his Phillis was, how lovely they
glanced, When from th' arches ebon-black flew looks as a.
lightning, That set a-fire with piercing flames even hearts
adamantine: Face rose-hu'd, cherry-red, with a silver taint§ like
a lily: Venus' pride might abate, might abash with a
blush to behold her;
» bed] The 4to. "beds."
t tithe] i. e. time.
t Where] The 4to. "When " (wrongly as tho preceding stanzas prove).
§ faint] Equivalent to "tint:" see note J, p. 151, first col.
Phoebus' wires compar'd to her hairs unworthy
the praising; Juno's stato and Pallas' wit disgrac'd with the
graces That grac'd her whom poor Coridon did choose
for a love-mate. Ah, but had Coridon now seen the star that
Alexis Likes and loves so dear that he melts to sighs
when he sees her, Did Coridon but see those eyes, those amorous
eye-lids, From whence fly holy flames of death or life in a
moment! Ah, did he see that face, those hairs that Venus,
Apollo Bash'd to behold, and, both disgrac'd, did grieve
that a creature Should exceed in hue, compared] both a god and
a goddess! Ah, had he seen my sweet paramour, the saint *
of Alexis, Then had he said, " Phillis, sit down surpassed
in all points, For there is one, more fair than thou, belov'd of
HEXAMETRA ROSAMUNDS IN DOLOREM
AMISSI ALEXIS. Tempr, the grove where dark Hecate doth keep
her abiding, Tempe, the grove where poor Rosamond bewails
her Alexis, Let not a tree nor a shrub be green to show thy
rejoicing, Let not a leaf once deck thy boughs and branches,
0 Tempe! Let not a bird record her tunes, nor chant any
sweet notes, But Philomel, let her bewail the loss of her
amours, And fill all the wood with doleful tunes to bemoan her: Parched leaves fill every spring, fill every
fountain; All the meads in mourning-weed fit them to
lamenting; Echo sit and sing despair i' the valleys, i' the
mountains; All Thessaly help poor Rosamond mournful to
For she's quite bereft of her love, and left of
Alexis: Once was she lik'd and once was she lov'd of
wanton Alexis; Now is she loath'd and now is she left of trothless
Alexis. Here did he clip* and kiss Rosamond, and vow
by Diana, None so dear to the swain as I, nor none so
beloved; Here did he deeply swear and call great Pan for
a witness, That Rosamond was only the rose belov'd of
Alexia, That Thessaly had not such another nymph to
delight him: "None," quoth he, "but Venus' fair shall have
any kisses; Not Phillis, were Phillis alive, should have any
favours, Nor Qalate, Galate so fair for beauteous eyebrows, Nor Doris, that lass that drew the swains to
behold her, Not one amongst all these nor all should gain
any graces, But Rosamond alone to herself should have her
Alexis." Now, to revenge the perjurM vows of faithless
Alexis, Pan, great Pan, that heard'st his oaths, and
mighty Diana, You Dryades, and watery Nymphs that sport by
the fountains, Fair Tempe, the gladsome grove of greatest
Apollo, Shrubs, and dales, and neighbouring hills, that
heard when he swore him, Witness all, and Beek to revenge the wrongs of a
virgin! Had any swain been lief to me but guileful
Alexis, Had Rosamond twin'd myrtle-boughs, or rosemary branches, Sweet hollyhock, or else daffodil, or slips of a
bay-tree, And given them for a gift to any swain but
Alexis, Well had Alexis done t' have left his rose for a
giglott: But Galate ne'er lov'd more dear her lovely
Than Rosamond did dearly love her toothless
Alexis; Endymion was ne'er beloVd of his Cytherea * Half so dear as true Rosamond belov'd her
Alexis. [down to the willows,
Now,, seely loss, hie down to the lake, haste And with those forsaken twigs go make thee a
chaplct; [brooks, by the rivers,
Mournful sit, and Bigh by the springs, by the Till thou turn for grief, as did Niobe, to a marble; Melt to tears, pour out thy plaints, let Echo
reclaim them, [Alexis.
How Rosamond, that loved so dear, is left of Now die, die, Rosamond ! let men engrave o" thy
tomb-stone, [A lexis,
Here lies she that lorid so dear the youngster
THAT HE LEFT WITH THE DESPAIRING LOVER.
When merry autumn in her prime,
Fruitful mother of swift time,
Had filled Ceres' lap with store
Of vines and corn, and micklo more
Such needful fruits an do grow
From Terra's bosom here below;
Tityrus did sigh, and seo
With heart's grief and eyes' gree,t
Eyes and heart both full of woes,
Where Galate his lover goes.
Her mantle was vermilion red;
A gaudy cbaplet on her head,
A chaplet that did shroud the beams
That Pbccbus on her beauty streams.
For sun itself desir'd to seo
So fair a nymph as was she,
For, viewing from the east to west,
Fair Galate did like him best.
Her face was like to welkin's shine;
Crystal brooks such were her % eyno,
And yet within those brooks were fires
That scorched youth and his desires.
Galate did much impair
Venus' honour for her fair; §
For stately stepping, Juno's pace
By Galate did take disgrace;
And Pallas' wisdom bare no prize
Where Galate would show her wise.
This gallant girl thus passeth by
Where Tityrus did sighing lie,
Sighing sore, for love strains
Moro than sighs from lovers' veins:
Tears in eye, thought in heart,
Thus his grief he did impart.
"Fair Galate, but glance thine eye;
Here lies he that here must die.
For love is death, if love not gain
Lover's salve for lover's pain.
Winters seven and more are past
Since on thy face my thoughts I cast:
When Galate did haunt the plains,
And fed her sheep amongst the swains,
When every shepherd left his flocks
To gaze on Galate's fair locks,
When every eyo did stand at gaze,
When heart and thought did both amaze,
When heart from body would asunder,
On Galate's fair face to wonder;
Then amongst them all did I
Catch such a wound as I must die,
If Galate oft say not thus,
'I love the shepherd Tityrus.'
'Tis love, fair nymph, that doth pain
Tityrus, thy truest swain;
True, for none more true can be
Than still to love, and none but thee.
Say, Galate, oft smile and say,
''Twere pity love should have a nay';
But such a word of comfort give,
And Tityrus thy love shall live:
Or with a piercing frown reply,
'I cannot love',* and then I die,
For lover's nay is lover's death,
And heart-break frowns do stop the breath."
Galate at this arose,
And with a smile away she goes,
As one that little card to ease
Tityr, pain'd with love's disease.
At her parting, Tityrus
Sigh'd amain, and sayed thus:
"0, that women are so fair,
To trap men's eyes T in their hair,
With beauteous eyes, love's fires,
Venus' sparks that heat desires!
* lore] Tho4to. "lino."
t eyu] An error, I believe, caused by the occurrence of tho word in tho next line.