« AnteriorContinuar »
How still the evening is,
As hush'd on purpose to grace harmony!
Good things of day begin to droop and drowse; Whiles night's black agents to their prey do rouse.
Gallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds,
Towards Phoebus' mansion; such a waggoner
As Phaeton would whip you to the west,
And bring in cloudy night immediately.
The weary sun hath made a golden set,
And, by the bright track of his fiery car,
Gives token of a goodly day to-morrow.
Look, how the sun begins to set;
How ugly night comes breathing at his heels:
Even with the vail and dark'ning of the sun,
To close the day up, life is done.
Look, the world's comforter, with weary gait,
His day's hot task hath ended in the west:
The owl, night's herald, shrieks, 't is very late;
The sheep are gone to fold, birds to their nest;
And coal-black clouds that shadow heaven's light,
Do summon us to part, and bid good night.
The sun hath made his journal greeting to
The gaudy, babbling, and remorseful day
Is crept into the bosom of the sea;
And now loud-howling wolves arouse the jades,
That drag the tragic melancholy night;
Who with their drowsy, slow, and flagging wings,
Clip dead men's graves, and from their misty jaws
Breathe foul contagious darkness in the air.
And yet dark night strangles the travelling lamp:
Is it night's predominance, or the day's shame,
That darkness does the face of earth intomb,
When living light should kiss it?
This night, methinks, is but the day-light sick,
It looks a little paler; 't is a day,
Such as the day is, when the sun is hid.
Thou sober-suited matron, all in black.
That when the searching eye of heaven is hid
Behind the globe, and lights the lower world,
Then thieves and robbers range abroad unseen,
In murders, and in outrage, bloody here;
But when, from under this terrestrial ball,
He fires the proud tops of the eastern pines,
And darts his light through every guilty hole,
Then murders, treasons, and detested sins,
The cloak of night being pluck'd from off their backs,
Stand bare and naked, trembling at themselves!
The crickets sing, and man's o'er-labour'd sense
Repairs itself by rest.
Sable Night, mother of Dread and Fear,
Upon the world dim darkness doth display,
And in her vaulty prison stows the day.
The dragon wing of night o'erspreads the earth.
Now the hungry lion roars,
And the wolf behowls the moon;
Whilst the heavy ploughman snores,
All with weary task fordone.
Now the wasted brands do glow,
Whilst the scritch-owl, scritching loud,
Puts the wretch, that lies in woe,
In remembrance of a shroud.
Now it is the time of night,
That the graves, all gaping wide,
Every one lets forth his sprite,
In the church-way paths to glide:
And we fairies, that do run
By the triple Hecat's team,
From the presence of the sun,
Following darkness like a dream.
Dark night, that from the eye his function takes,
The ear more quick of apprehension makes;
Wherein it doth impair the seeing sense,
It pays the hearing double recompense.
The moon shines bright:-In such a night as this,
When the sweet wind did gently kiss the trees,
And they did make no noise; in such a night,
Troilus, methinks, mounted the Trojan walls,
And sigh'd his soul towards the Grecian tents,
Where Cressid lay that night.
In such a night,
Did Thisbe fearfully o'ertrip the dew;
And saw the lion's shadow ere himself,
And ran dismay'd away.
Stood Dido with a willow in her hand
Upon the wild sea-banks, and waved her love
To come again to Carthage.
Medea gather'd the enchanted herbs,
Love not such nights as these; the wrathful skies
Gallow the very wanderers of the dark,
And make them keep their caves: Since I was man,
Such sheets of fire, such bursts of horrid thunder,
Such groans of roaring wind and rain, I never
Remember to have heard: man's nature cannot carry
The affliction, nor the fear.
The iron tongue of midnight hath told twelve.
Whose womb immeasurable, and infinite breast,
Teems, and feeds all; whose self-same mettle,
Whereof thy proud child, arrogant man, is puff'd,
Engenders the black toad, and adder blue,
The gilded newt, and eyeless venom'd worm,
With all the abhorred births below crisp heaven
Whereon Hyperion's quickening fire doth shine;
Yield him, who all thy human sons doth hate,
From forth thy plenteous bosom, one poor root.
Behold the earth hath roots;
Within this mile break forth a hundred springs:
The oaks bear mast, the briars scarlet hips;
The bounteous housewife, nature, on each bush
Lays her full mess before you.
Go, bind thou up yon dangling apricocks,
Which, like unruly children, make the sire
Stoop with oppression of their prodigal weight:
Give some supportance to the bending twigs.-
Go thou, and, like an executioner,
Cut off the heads of too-fast-growing sprays,
That look too lofty in the commonwealth:
All must be even in our government.-
You thus employ'd, I will go root away
The noisome weeds, that without profit suck
The soil's fertility from wholesome flowers.
We at time of year
Do wound the bark, the skin of our fruit-trees;
Lest, being over-proud with sap and blood,
With too much riches it confound itself.
All superfluous branches
We lop away, that bearing boughs may live.
Earth's increase, and foison plenty,
Barns and garners never empty;
Vines, with clust'ring bunches growing!
Plants, with goodly burden bowing;
Spring come to you, at the farthest,
In the very end of harvest!
Scarcity and want shall shun you;
Ceres' blessing so is on you.
How use doth breed a habit in a man!
This shadowy desert, unfrequented woods,
I better brook than flourishing peopled towns;
Here can I sit alone, unseen of any,
And, to the nightingale's complaining notes,
Tune my distresses, and record my woes.
O thou that dost inhabit in my breast,
Leave not the mansion so long tenantless;
Lest, growing ruinous, the building fall,
And leave no memory of what it was!