Графични страници
PDF файл
ePub

Of heav'n, that though the world hath done his worst Thou shalt stand still bely'd and slandered,
To put it out by discords most unkind,

The only gazing-stock of ignorance,
Yet doth it still in perfect union stand

And by thy guile the wise admonished, With God and man; nor ever will be forc'd

Shall never more desire such hopes t'advance, From that most sweet accord ; but still agree, Nor trust their living glory with the dead Equal in fortune, in equality.

That cannot speak, but leave their fame to chance. And this note, madam, of your worthiness

Consid'ring in how small a room do lie, Remains recorded in so many hearts,

And yet lie safe (as fresh as if alive) As time nor malice cannot wrong your right, All those great worthies of antiquity, The inheritance of fame you must possess :

Which long fore-liv'd thee, and shall long survive; You that have built you by your great deserts Who stronger tombs found for eternity, (Out of small means) a far more exquisite

Than could the pow'rs of all the earth contrive. And glorious dwelling for your honour'd name, Where they remain these trifles to upbraid, Than all the gold that leaden minds can frame. Out of the reach of spoil, and way of rage ;

Though time with all his pow'r of years hath laid

Long batt'ry, back'd with undermining age;
DESCRIPTION OF STONE-HENGE. Yet they make head only with their own aid,

And war with his all-conqu’ring forces wage ;
And whereto serves that wondrous trophy now Pleading the heaven's prescription to be free,
That on the goodly plain near Walton stands? And t' have a grant t'endure as long as he.
That huge dumb heap, that cannot tell us how,
Nor what, nor whence it is; nor with whose hands,
Nor for whose glory—it was set to shew,
How much our pride mocks that of other lands.

LOVE IN INFANCY.
Whereon, when as the gazing passenger
Had greedy look'd with admiration;

Ah! I remember well (and how can I
And fain would know his birth, and what he were ; But evermore remember well ?) when first
How there erected ; and how long agon:

Our flame began, when scarce we knew what was Inquires and asks his fellow traveller

The flame we felt; when as we sat and sigh'd What he had heard, and his opinion.

And look'd upon each other, and conceiv'd And he knows nothing. Then he turns again, Not what we ail'd, yet something we did ail ; And looks and sighs ; and then admires afresh, And yet were well, and yet we were not well, And in himself with sorrow doth complain

And what was our disease we could not tell. The misery of dark forgetfulness :

Then would we kiss, then sigh, then look : And thus Angry with time that nothing should remain,

In that first garden of our simpleness Our greatest wonders' wonder to express.

We spent our childhood : But when years began Then ignorance, with fabulous discourse,

To reap the fruit of knowledge ; ah, how then Robbing fair art and cunning of their right, Would she with graver looks, and sweet stern brow, Tells how those stones were by the devil's force Check my presumption and my forwardness ; From Afric brought to Ireland in a night;

Yet still would give me flowers, still would me show And thence to Brittany, by magic course,

What she would have me, yet not have me know. From giants' hands redeem'd by Merlin's sleight.

And then near Ambri plac'd, in memory
Of all those noble Britons murder'd there,
By Hengist and his Saxon treachery,

THE STORY OF ISULIA.
Coming to parley, in peace at unaware.
With this old legend then credulity

THERE was sometime a nymph,
Holds her content, and closes up her care.

Isulia named, and an Arcadian born, But is antiquity so great a liar ?

Whose mother dying left her very young Or do her younger sons her age abuse;

Unto her father's charge, who carefully Seeing after-comers still so apt t' admire

Did breed her up until she came to years The grave authority that she doth use,

Of womanhood, and then provides a match
That rev'rence and respect dares not require

Both rich and young, and fit enough for her.
Proof of her deeds, or once her words refuse ? But she, who to another shepherd had,
Yet wrong they did us, to presume so far

Call'd Sirthis, vow'd her love, as unto one
Upon our early credit and delight;

Her heart esteem'd more worthy of her love, For once found false, they straight became to mar Could not by all her father's means be wrought Our faith, and their own reputation quite ;

To leave her choice, and to forget her vow. That now her truths hardly believed are ;

This nymph one day, surcharg'd with love and grief, And though she avouch the right, she scarce hath right. Which commonly (the more the pity) dwell

And as for thee, thou huge and mighty frame, As inmates both together, walking forth That stand'st corrupted so with time's despite,

With other maids to fish upon the shore; And giv'st false evidence against their fame

Estrays apart, and leaves her company, That set thee there to testify their right;

To entertain herself with her own thoughts : And art become a traitor to their name,

And wanders on so far, and out of sight, That trusted thee with all the best they might; As she at length was suddenly surpriz'd

By pirates, who lay lurking underneath

The captain seeing his wife, the child, the nymph, Those hollow rocks, expecting there some prize. All crying to him in this piteous sort, And notwithstanding all her piteous cries,

Felt his rough nature shaken too, and grants Intreaties, tears, and prayers, those fierce men His wife's request, and seals his grant with tears ; Rent hair and veil, and carried her by force

And so they wept all four for company : Into their ship, which in a little creek

And some beholders stood not with dry eyes; Hard by at anchor lay,

Such passion wrought the passion of their prize.
And presently they hoisted sail and so away. Never was there pardon, that did take
When she was thus inshipp'd, and woefully Condemned from the block, more joyful than
Had cast her eyes about to view that hell

This grant to her. For all her misery
Of horror, whereinto she was so suddenly emplung’d, Seem'd nothing to the comfort she receivid,
She spies a woman sitting with a child

By being thus saved from impurity;
Sucking her breast, which was the captain's wife. And from the woman's feet she would not part,
To her she creeps, down at her feet she lies;

Nor trust her hand to be without some hold “ ( woman, if that name of woman may

Of her, or of the child, so long as she remain'd Move you to pity, pity a poor maid ;

Within the ship, which in few days arrives The most distressed soul that ever breath'd ;

At Alexandria, whence these pirates were ; And save me from the hands of those fierce men. And there this woeful maid for two years' space Let me not be defild and made unclean,

Did serve, and truly serve this captain's wife, Dear woman, now, and I will be to you

(Who would not lose the benefit of her The faithfull'st slave that ever mistress serv'd; Attendance, for her profit otherwise) Never poor soul shall be more dutiful,

But daring not in such a place as that To do whatever you command, than I.

To trust herself in woman's habit, crav'd No toil will I refuse; so that I may

That she might be apparel'd like a boy; Keep this poor body clean and undeflower'd, And so she was, and as a boy she serv’d. Which is all I will ever seek. For know

At two years' end her mistress sends her forth It is not fear of death lays me thus low,

Unto the port for some commodities, But of that stain will make my death to blush.” Which whilst she sought for, going up and down, All this would nothing move the woman's heart, She heard some merchantmen of Corinth talk, Whom yet she would not leave, but still besought; Who spake that language the Arcadians did, “ () woman, by that infant at your breast,

And were next neighbours of one continent. And by the pains it cost you at the birth,

To them, all rapt with passion, down she kneels, Save me, as ever you desire to have

Tells them she was a poor distressed boy, Your babe to joy and prosper in the world :

Born in Arcadia, and by pirates took, Which will the better prosper sure, if you

And made a slave in Egypt: and besought Shall mercy shew, which is with mercy paid !" Them, as they fathers were of children, or Then kisses she her feet, then kisses too

Did hold their native country dear, they would The infant's feet; and “Oh, sweet babe,” (said she) Take pity on her, and relieve her youth “ Could'st thou but to thy mother speak for me,

From that sad servitude wherein she liv'd : And crave her to have pity on my case,

For which she hoped that she had friends alive Thou might'st perhaps prevail with her so much Would thank them one day, and reward them too; Although I cannot; child, ah, could'st thou speak." If not, yet that she knew the heav'ns would do. The infant, whether by her touching it,

The merchants mov'd with pity of her case, Or by instinct of nature, seeing her weep,

Being ready to depart, took her with them, Looks earnestly upon her, and then looks

And landed her upon her country coast : L'pon the mother, then on her again,

Where, when she found herself, she prostrate falls, And then it cries, and then on either looks :

Kisses the ground, thanks gives unto the gods, Which she perceiving ; “ blessed child,” said she) Thanks them who had been her deliverers, * Although thou can'st not speak, yet dost thou cry And on she trudges through the desart woods, Unto thy mother for me. Hear thy child,

Climbs over craggy rocks, and mountains steep, Dear mother, it's for me it cries,

Wades thorough rivers, struggles thorough bogs, It's all the speech it hath. Accept those cries, Sustained only by the force of love; Save me at his request from being defild:

Until she came unto her native plains, Let pity move thee, that thus moves thy child." Unto the fields where first she drew her breath. The woman, tho' by birth and custom rude, There she lifts up her eyes, salutes the air, Yet having veins of nature, could not be

Salutes the trees, the bushes, flow'rs and all : But pierceable, did feel at length the point

And, “Oh, dear Sirthis, here I am,” said she, Of pity enter so, as out gush'd tears,

Here, notwithstanding all my miseries, (Not usual to stern eyes) and she besought

I am, the same I ever was to thee ; a pure, Her husband to bestow on her that prize

A chaste, and spotless maid.” With safeguard of her body at her will.

[ocr errors]

G

SIR JOHN SUCKLING-A. D. 1608-41.

:

And surely the company would have been content, A SESSION OF THE POETS. If they could have found any precedent;

But in all their records, either in verse or prose, A SESSION was held the other day,

There was not one Laureat without a nose.
And A pollo himself was at it, they say;
The laurel that had been so long reserv'd,

To Will Bartlet sure all the wits meant well,
Was now to be given to him best desery'd.

But first they wou'd see how his show wou'd sell:

Will smild, and swore in their judgments they went And therefore the wits of the town came thither, That concluded of merit upon success. [less, 'Twas strange to see how they flocked together, Each strongly confident of his own way,

Suddenly taking his place again, Thought to gain the laurel away that day.

He gave way to Selwin, who straight stept in;

But alas ! he had been so lately a wit, There was Selden, and he sat close by the chair ; That Apollo himself scarce knew him yet. Wainman not far off, which was very fair ; Sands with Townsend, for they kept the order ; Toby Matthews (pox on him) how came he there? Digby and Shillingsworth a little further :

Was whispering nothing in somebody's ear,

When he had the honour to be nam'd in court, There was Lucan's translator too, and he

But Sir, you may thank my Lady Carlisle fort : That makes God so big in's poetry : Selwin and Waller, and Bartlets both the brothers; For had not her characters furnish'd you out Jack Vaughan and Porter, and divers others. With something of handsome, without all doubt

You and your sorry Lady-Muse had been The first that broke silence was good old Ben, In the number of those that were not let in. Prepar'd with Canary wine, And he told them plainly he desery'd the bays, In haste from the court two or three came in, For his were callid works, where others were but And they brought letters, forsooth, from the Queen, plays.

"Twas discreetly done too, for if th' had come

Without them, th' had scarce been let into the room. And bid them remember how he had purg'd the stage Of errors that had lasted many an age,

This made a dispute ; for 'twas plain to be seen And he hop'd they did not think the Silent Woman, Each man had a mind to gratify the Queen : The Fox, and the Alchymist outdone by no man. But Apollo himself could not think it fit;

There was difference, he said, betwixt fooling and wit. Apollo stopt him there, and bid him not go on, 'Twas merit, he said, and not presumption

Sackling next was call’d, but did not appear, Must carry't, at which Ben turned about

But straight one whisper'd A pollo i' th ear, And in great choler offer'd to go out:

That of all men living he cared not for't,

He lov'd not the Muses so well as his sport;
But those that were there thought it not fit
To discontent so ancient a wit:

And priz'd black eyes, or a lucky hit
And therefore Apollo call'd him back again, At bowls, above all the trophies of wit ;
And made him mine host of his own New Inn. But Apollo was angry, and publicly said

"Twere fit that a fine were set upon's head. Tom Carew was next, but he had a fault That would not well stand with a laureat;

Wat Montague now stood forth to his trial,
His Muse was hard bound, and th’ issue of's brain And did not so much as suspect a denial ;
Was seldom brought forth but with trouble and pain. But witty Apollo ask'd him first of all

If he understood his own pastoral.
And all that were present there did agree,
A Laureat-Muse should be easy and free,

For if he cou'd do it, 'twould plainly appear
Yet sure 'twas not that, but 'twas thought that his He understood more than any man there,
Grace

And did merit the bays above all the rest, Consider'd he was well he had a cup-bearer's place. But the Monsieur was modest; and silence confest. Will Davenant, asham'd of a foolish mischance During these troubles in the court was hid That he had got lately travelling in France, One that Apollo soon miss'd, little Cid; Modestly hop'd the handsomeness of's Muse And having spy'd him, call'd him out of the throng, Might any deformity about him excuse.

And advis'å him in his ear not to write so strong.

Murrey was summond, but 'twas urg'd, that he At Charing-Cross, hard by the way
Was chief already of another company.

Where we (thou know'st) do sell our hay,

There is a house with stairs ; Hales set by himself most gravely did smile

And there did I see coming down To see them about nothing keep such a coil ;

Such folks as are not in our town, Apollo had spy'd him, but knowing his mind

Vorty at least, in pairs. Past by, and call'd Falkland, that sate just behind :

Amongst the rest, one pest'lent fine, But he was of late so gone with divinity,

(His beard no bigger though than thine) That he had almost forgot his poetry,

Walk'd on before the rest : Though to say the truth, and Apollo did know it, Our landlord looks like nothing to him : He might have been both his priest and his poet. The king (God bless him) 'twou'd undo him,

Shou'd he go still so drest. At length who but an Alderman did appear, At which Will Davenant began to swear ;

At Course-a-park, without all doubt, But wiser Apollo bade him draw nigher,

He should have first been taken out And, when he was mounted a little higher,

By all the maids i' th' town:

Though lusty Roger there had been, He openly declar'd, that the best sign

Or little George upon the green, Of good store of wit's to have good store of coin,

Or Vincent of the crown. And without a syllable more or less said, He put the laurel on the Alderman's head.

But wot you what? the youth was going

To make an end of all his wooing; At this all the wits were in such amaze

The parson for him staid : That, for a good while, they did nothing but gaze Yet by his leave, for all his haste, One upon another ; not a man in the place

He did not so much wish all past But had discontent writ at large in his face.

(Perchance) as did the maid. Only the small poets cheer'd up again,

The maid_and thereby hangs a tale Out of hope, as 'twas thought, of borrowing ;

For such a maid no Whitson ale But sure they were out, for he forfeits his crown

Could ever yet produce :
When he lends to any poet about the town.

No grape that's kindly ripe, could be
So round, so plump, so soft as she,

Nor half so full of juice.

SONG.

Why so pale and wan, fond lover ?

Pr'ythee why so pale ?
Will, when looking well can't move her,

Looking ill prevail ?

Pr'ythee why so pale ?
Why so dull and mute, young sinner ?

Pr'ythee why so mute?
Will, when speaking well can't win her,

Saying nothing do't?

Pr'ythee why so mute ?
Quit, quit for shame! this will not move,

This cannot take her;
If of herself she will not love,

Nothing can make her :-
The devil take her.

Her finger was so small, the ring
Wou'd not stay on which they did bring,

It was too wide a peck:
And to say truth (for out it must)
It look'd like the great collar (just)

About our young colt's neck.
Her feet beneath her petticoat,
Like little mice stole in and out,

As if they fear'd the light:
But oh! she dances such a way!
No sun upon an Easter Day,

Is half so fine a sight.
He wou'd have kiss'd her once or twice,
But she wou'd not, she was so nice,

She wou'd not do't in sight;
And then she look'd as who shou'd say,
I will do what I list to day ;

And you shall do't at night.

BALLAD ON A WEDDING.

Her cheeks so rare a white was on,
No daizy makes comparison,

(Who sees them is undone) For streaks of red were mingled there, Such as are on a Katherine pear,

The side that's next the sun.

I TELL thee, Dick, where I have been,
Where I the rarest things have seen :

Oh things without compare !
Such sights again cannot be found
In any place on English ground,

Be it at wake, or fair.

Her lips were red, and one was thin
Compar'd to that was next her chin,

Some bee had stung it newly.

[blocks in formation]

Passion o'me! how I run on!
There's that that wou'd be thought upon,

I trow, besides the bride.
The bus'ness of the kitchen's great,
For it is fit that men should eat ;

Nor was it there deny'd.

[ocr errors]

Just in the nick the cook knock'd thrice, And all the waiters in a trice

His summons did obey, Each serving-man with dish in hand, March'd boldly up, like our train'd band,

Presented and away.

'Tis now, since I sat down before

That foolish fort, a heart, (Time strangely spent) a year and more,

And still I did my part:
Made my approaches, from her hand

Unto her lip did rise,
And did already understand

The language of her eyes.
Proceeded on with no less art,

My tongue was engineer ;
I thought to undermine the heart

By whispering in the ear.
When this did nothing, I brought down

Great cannon oaths, and shot
A thousand thousand to the town,

And still it yielded not.
I then resolv'd to starve the place

By cutting off all kisses,
Praising and gazing on her face,

And all such little blisses.

When all the meat was on the table,
What man of knife, or teeth, was able

To stay to be entreated :
And this the very reason was,
Before the parson could say grace,

The company was seated.
How hats fly off, and youths carouse;
Healths first go round, and then the house,

The bride's came thick and thick; And when 'twas nam'd another's health, Perhaps he made it her's by stealth,

And who could help it, Dick ?

To draw her out, and from her strength,

I drew all batteries in ;
And brought myself to lie at length

As if no siege had been.

O th’ sudden up they rise and dance ;
Then sit again, and sigh and glance:

Then dance again and kiss. Thus sev'ral ways the time did pass, Whilst ev'ry woman wish'd her place,

And ev'ry man wish'd his.

When I had done what man could do,

And thought the place mine own, The enemy lay quiet too,

And smil'd at all was done.

I sent to know from whence and where

These hopes, and this relief?
A spy inform’d, honour was there,

And did command in chief.

By this time all were stol'n aside,
To counsel and undress the bride;

But that he must not know : But yet 'twas thought he guest her mind, And did not mean to stay behind

Above an hour or so,

March, march, (quoth I) the word straight give,

Let's lose no time, but leave her; That giant upon air will live,

And hold it out for ever.

When in he came (Dick) there she lay,
Like new-fal’n snow melting away,

'Twas time, I trow, to part. Kisses were now the only stay, Which soon she gave, as who wou'd say,

Good bw'y, with all my heart.

To such a place our camp remove

As will not siege abide; I hate a fool that starves her love

Only to feed her pride.

« ПредишнаНапред »