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The sea hath bounds, but deep desire hath none;
Therefore, no marvel though thy horse be gone.
How like a jade he stood, tied to the tree,
Servilely mastered with a leathern rein ;
But when he saw his love, his youth's fair fee,
He held such petty bondage in disdain ;
Throwing the base thong from his bending crest,
Enfranchising his mouth, his back, his breast.
Who sees his true-love in her naked bed,
Teaching the sheets a whiter hue than white,
But, when his glutton eye so full hath fed,
His other agents aim at like delight?
Who is so faint, that dare not be so bold
To touch the fire, the weather being cold?
Let me excuse thy courser, gentle boy,
And learn of him, I heartily beseech thee,
To take advantage on presented joy;
Though I were dumb, yet his proceedings teach thee:
0! learn to love; the lesson is but plain,
And once made perfect, never lost again.
I know not love, quoth he, nor will not know it :
Unless it be a boar, and then I chase it ;
'Tis much to borrow, and I will not owe it ;
My love to love is love but to disgrace it ;
For I have heard it is a life in death,
That laughs, and weeps, and all but with a breath.
Who wears a garment shapeless and unfinish'd ?
Who plucks the bud before one leaf put forth?
If springing things be any jot diminishid,
They wither in their prime, prove nothing worth:
The colt that's back'd and burden'd being young,
Loseth his pride, and never waxeth strong. You hurt my hand with wringing ; let us part, And leave this idle theme, this bootless chat : Remove your siege from my unyielding heart; To love's alarmso it will not ope the gate : 9 To love's ALARMS-] “Alarms" is the reading of every old edition anterior VOL. VIII.
Dismiss your vows, your feigned tears, your flattery, · · For where a heart is hard, they make no battery.
What! canst thou talk? (quoth she,) hast thou a tongue ?
0, would thou hadst not, or I had no hearing!
Thy mermaid's voice hath done me double wrong!
I had my load before, now press’d with bearing :
Melodious discord, heavenly tune harsh-sounding,
Ear's deep sweet music, and heart's deep sore wounding.
Had I no eyes, but ears, my ears would love
That inward beauty and invisible;
Or, were I deaf, thy outward parts would move
Each part in me that were but sensible:
Though neither eyes nor ears, to hear nor see,
Yet should I be in love by touching thee.
Say, that the sense of feeling were bereft me,
And that I could not see, nor hear, nor touch,
And nothing but the very smell were left me,
Yet would my love to thee be still as much;
For from the stillitory of thy face excelling
Comes breath perfum'd, that breedeth love by smelling.
But 0! what banquet wert thou to the taste,
Being nurse and feeder of the other four :
Would they not wish the feast might ever last,
And bid suspicion double lock the door,
Lest jealousy, that sour unwelcome guest,
Should by his stealing in disturb the feast?
Once more the ruby-colour'd portal opened,
Which to his speech did honey-passage yield;
Like a red morn, that ever yet betoken'
Wreck to the sea-man, tempest to the field,
Sorrow to shepherds, woe unto the birds,
Gusts and foul flaws' to herdmen and to herds.
This ill presage advisedly she marketh:
Even as the wind is hush'd before it raineth ;
Or as the wolf doth grin before he barketh,
Or as the berry breaks before it staineth ;
Or like the deadly bullet of a gun,
His meaning struck her ere his words begun.
And at his look she flatly falleth down,
For looks kill love, and love by looks reviveth :
A smile recures the wounding of a frown;
But blessed bankrupt that by love so thriveth !
The silly boy, believing she is dead,
Claps her pale cheek, till clapping makes it red ;
And all amaz'd brake off his late intent,
For sharply he did think to reprehend her,
Which cunning love did wittily prevent :
Fair fall the wit that can so well defend her!
For on the grass she lies, as she were slain,
Till his breath breatheth life in her again.
He wrings her nose, he strikes her on the cheeks,
He bends her fingers, holds her pulses hard,
He chafes her lips; a thousand ways he seeks
To mend the hurt that his unkindness marr’d:
He kisses her; and she, by her good will,
Will never rise, so he will kiss her still.
The night of sorrow now is turn’d to day:
Her two blue windows faintly she up-heaveth,
Like the fair sun, when in his fresh array
He cheers the morn, and all the earth relieveth ?:
And as the bright sun glorifies the sky,
So is her face illumin’d with her eye;
Whose beams upon his hairless face are fix'd, .
As if from thence they borrow'd all their shine.
Were never four such lamps together mix'd,
Had not his clouded with his brow's repine ;
But hers, which through the crystal tears gave light, Shone like the moon in water seen by night.
0! where am I ? quoth she, in earth or heaven,
Or in the ocean drench'd, or in the fire ?
What hour is this? or morn or weary even?
Do I delight to die, or life desire?
But now I liv’d, and life was death's annoy;
But now I died, and death was lively joy.
0! thou didst kill me ; kill me once again:
Thy eye's shrewd tutor, that hard heart of thine,
Hath taught them scornful tricks, and such disdain,
That they have murder'd this poor heart of mine ;
And these mine eyes, true leaders to their queen,
But for thy piteous lips no more had seen.
Long may they kiss each other for this cure !
0! never let their crimson liveries wear,
And as they last, their verdure still endure,
To drive infection from the dangerous year!
That the star-gazers, having writ on death,
May say, the plague is banish'd by thy breath.
Pure lips, sweet seals in my soft lips imprinted,
What bargains may I make, still to be sealing ?
To sell myself I can be well contented,
So thou wilt buy, and pay, and use good dealing ;
Which purchase if thou make, for fear of slips
Set thy seal-manual on my wax-red lips.
A thousand kisses buys my heart from me,
And pay them at thy leisure, one by one.
What is ten hundred touches unto thee?
Are they not quickly told, and quickly gone?
Say, for non-payment that the debt should double,
Is twenty hundred kisses such a trouble ?
Fair queen, quoth he, if any love you owe me,
Measure my strangeness with my unripe years :
Before I know myself, seek not to know me; .
No fisher but the ungrown fry forbears :
The mellow plum doth fall, the green sticks fast,
Or being early pluck'd is sour to taste.
Look, the world's comforter, with weary gait,
His day's hot task hath ended in the west :
The owl, night's herald, shrieks, 'tis 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.
Now let me say good night; and so say you ;
If you will say so, you shall have a kiss.
Good night, quoth she; and, ere he says adieu,
The honey-fee of parting tender'd is :
Her arms do lend his neck a sweet embrace ;
Incorporate then they seem, face grows to face.
Till breathless he disjoin'd, and backward drew
The heavenly moisture, that sweet coral mouth,
Whose precious taste her thirsty lips well knew,
Whereon they surfeit, yet complain on drought :
He with her plenty press’d, she faint with dearth,
Their lips together glued, fall to the earth.
Now quick desire hath caught the yielding prey,
And glutton-like she feeds, yet never filleth;
Her lips are conquerors, his lips obey,
Paying what ransom the insulter willeth ;
Whose vulture thought doth pitch the price so high,
That she will draw his lips' rich treasure dry.
And having felt the sweetness of the spoil,
With blindfold fury she begins to forage;
Her face doth reek and smoke, her blood doth boil,
And careless lust stirs up a desperate courage ;
Planting oblivion, beating reason back,
Forgetting shame's pure blush, and honour's wrack'.
Hot, faint, and weary, with her hard embracing,
Like a wild bird being tam'd with too much handling,