ePub 版

She, marking them, begins a wailing note,
And sings extemporally a woeful ditty;

How love makes young men thrall, and old men dote;

How love is wise in folly, foolish-witty:

Her heavy anthem still concludes in "Woe," And still the choir of echoes answer so.

Her song was tedious, and outwore the night, For lovers' hours are long, though seeming short: If pleased themselves, others, they think, delight In such-like circumstance, with such-like sport: Their copious stories, oftentimes begun,

End without audience, and are never done.

For who hath she to spend the night withal,
But idle sounds-resembling parasites,

Like shrill-tongued tapsters answering every call,
Soothing the humour of fantastic wits?

She says, "tis so:" they answer all, "tis so;" And would say after her, if she said "no."

Lo! here the gentle lark, weary of rest,
From his moist cabinet mounts up on high,
And wakes the morning, from whose silver breast
The sun ariseth in his majesty ;

Who doth the world so gloriously behold,

The cedar-tops and hills seem burnish'd gold.

Venus salutes him with this fair good-morrow: "O, thou clear god, and patron of all light, From whom each lamp and shining star doth borrow

The beauteous influence that makes him bright, There lives a son, that suck'd an earthly mother, May lend thee light, as thou dost lend to other."

This said, she hasteth to a myrtle grove,
Musing the morning is so much o'erworn,
And yet she hears no tidings of her love:
She hearkens for his hounds, and for his horn:
Anon she hears them chant it lustily,
And all in haste she coasteth to the cry.

And as she runs, the bushes in the way
Some catch her by the neck, some kiss her face,
Some twine about her thigh to make her stay;
She wildly breaketh from their strict embrace,
Like a milch doe, whose swelling dugs do ache,
Hasting to feed her fawn hid in some brake.

By this, she hears the hounds are at a bay;
Whereat she starts, like one that spies an adder
Wreathed up in fatal folds, just in his way,
The fear whereof doth make him shake and

Even so the timorous yelping of the hounds
Appals her senses, and her spirit confounds.

For now she knows it is no gentle chase,
But the blunt boar, rough bear, or lion proud,
Because the cry remaineth in one place,
Where fearfully the dogs exclaim aloud :
Finding their enemy to be so curst,
They all strain court'sy who shall cope him first.

This dismal cry rings sadly in her ear,
Through which it enters to surprise her heart;
Who, overcome by doubt and bloodless fear,
With cold-pale weakness numbs each feeling part:
Like soldiers, when their captain once doth

They basely fly, and dare not stay the field.

Thus stands she in a trembling ecstasy;
Till, cheering up her senses sore-dismay'd,
She tells them 'tis a causeless fantasy,
And childish error, that they are afraid;
Bids them leave quaking, bids them fear no


And with that word she spied the hunted boar ;

Whose frothy mouth, bepainted all with red, Like milk and blood being mingled both together, A second fear through all her sinews spread, Which madly hurries her she knows not whither: This way she runs, and now she will no further, But back retires, to rate the boar for murther.

A thousand spleens bear her a thousand ways; She treads the path that she untreads again; Her more than haste is mated with delays, Like the proceedings of a drunken brain,

Full of respect, yet nought at all respecting, In hand with all things, nought at all effecting.

Here kennell'd in a brake she finds a hound, And asks the weary caitiff for his master; And there another licking of his wound, 'Gainst venom'd sores the only sovereign plaster; And here she meets another sadly scowling, To whom she speaks, and he replies with howling.

When he hath ceased his ill-resounding noise, Another flap-mouth'd mourner, black and grim, Against the welkin volleys out his voice; Another and another answer him,

Clapping their proud tails to the ground below,

Shaking their scratch'd ears, bleeding as they go.

Look, how the world's poor people are amazed
At apparitions, signs, and prodigies,
Whereon with fearful eyes they long have gazed,
Infusing them with dreadful prophecies:

So she at these sad signs draws up her breath,
And, sighing it again, exclaims on Death:

“Hard-favour'd tyrant, ugly, meagre, lean, Hateful divorce of love," (thus chides she Death,) Grim-grinning ghost, earth's worm, what dost thou mean


To stifle beauty, and to steal his breath,

Who when he lived, his breath and beauty set
Gloss on the rose, smell to the violet?

"If he be dead,-O no, it cannot be,
Seeing his beauty, thou shouldst strike at it :—
O yes, it may; thou hast no eyes to see,
But hatefully at random dost thou hit.

Thy mark is feeble age; but thy false dart
Mistakes that aim, and cleaves an infant's heart.

"Hadst thou but bid beware, then he had spoke, And hearing him, thy power had lost his power. The Destinies will curse thee for this stroke; They bid thee crop a weed, thou pluck'st a flower:

Love's golden arrow at him should have fled, And not Death's ebon dart, to strike him dead.

"Dost thou drink tears, that thou provok❜st such weeping?

What may a heavy groan advantage thee?
Why hast thou cast into eternal sleeping
Those eyes that taught all other eyes to see?
Now Nature cares not for thy mortal vigour,
Since her best work is ruin'd with the rigour

[ocr errors]

Here overcome, as one full of despair,
She vail'd her eyelids, who, like sluices,

The crystal tide that from her two cheeks fair
In the sweet channel of her bosom dropp'd;
But through the flood-gates breaks the silver

And with his strong course opens them again.

O, how her eyes and tears did lend and borrow! Her eyes seen in the tears, tears in her eye; Both crystals, where they view'd each other's sorrow,

Sorrow, that friendly sighs sought still to dry;

But like a stormy day, now wind, now rain, Sighs dry her cheeks, tears make them wet again.

Variable passions throng her constant woe,
As striving who should best become her grief;
All entertain'd, each passion labours so
That every present sorrow seemeth chief,

But none is best; then join they all together, Like many clouds consulting for foul wea ther.

By this, far off she hears some huntsmen hollo:
A nurse's song ne'er pleas'd her babe so well :
The dire imagination she did follow
This sound of hope doth labour to expel;
For now reviving joy bids her rejoice,
And flatters her it is Adonis' voice.

Whereat her tears began to turn their tide, Being prison'd in her eye, like pearls in glass ;

« 上一頁繼續 »