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“ The aged man that coffers up his gold,
“ Guilty thou art of murder and of theft; "Is plagu'd with cramps, and gouts, and painful fits, Guilty of perjury and subornation; And scarce hath eyes his treasure to behold, Guilty of treason, forgery, and shift; But like still-pining Tantalus he sits,
Guilty of incest, that abomination : And useles barns the harvest of his wits;
An accessary by thine inclination Having no other pleasure of his gain,
To all sins past, and all that are to come, But torment that it cannot cure his pain.
From the creation to the general doom. “ So then he hath it when he cannot use it, “ Mishapen Time, copesmate of ugly Night, And leaves it to be master'd by his young;
Swift subtle post, carrier of grisly care; Who in their pride do presently abuse it:
Eater of youth, false slave to false delight,
Thou nursest all, and murderest all that are.
To endless date of never-ending woes?
Time's office is to fine the hate of foes; But ill-annexed opportunity
To eat up errour by opinion bred, Or kills his life, or else his quality.
Not spend the dowry of a lawful bed. “ O Opportunity! thy guilt is great:
“ Time's glory is to calm contending kings, T is thou that execut'st the traitor's treason ; To unmask falsehood, and bring truth to light, Thou set'st the wolf where he the lamb may get; To stamp the seal of time in aged things, Whoever plots the sin, thou point'st the season; To wake the morn, and centinel the night, 'T is thou that spurn'st at right, at law, at reason ; To wrong the wronger till he render right; And in thy shady cell, where none may spy him, To ruinate proud buildings with thy hours, Sits Sin, to seize the souls that wander by him. And smear with dust their glittering golden towers: “ Thou mak'st the vestal violate her oath; “ To fill with worm-holes stately monuments, Thou blow'st the fire when temperance is thaw'd; To feed oblivion with decay of things, Thou smother'st honesty, thou murder'st troth; To blot old books, and alter their contents, Thou foul abettor! thoa notorious bawd!
To pluck the quills from ancient ravens' wings, Thou plantest scandal, and displacest laud : To dry the old oak's sap, and cherish springs ; Thou ravisher, tbou traitor, thou false thief, To spoil antiquities of bammer'd steel, Thy honey turns to gall, thy joy to grief!
And turn the giddy round of Fortune's wheel: “ Thy secret pleasure turns to open shame, “ To show the beldame daughters of her daughter, Thy private feasting to a public fast;
To make the child a man, the inan a child, Thy smoothing titles to a ragged name;
To slay the tiger that doth live by slaughter, Thy sugar'd tongue to bitter wormwood taste: To tame the unicorn and lion wild; Thy violent vanities can never last.
To mock the subtle, in themselves beguild; How comes it then, vile Opportunity,
To cheer the ploughman with increaseful crops, Being so bad, such numbers seek for thee? And waste huge stones with little water-drops. " When wilt thou be the humble suppliant's friend, " Why work'st thou mischief in thy pilgrimage, And bring him where his suit may be obtained ? Unless thou could'st return to make amends? When wilt thou sort an hour great strifes to end? One poor retiring minute in an age Or free that soul which wretchedness hath chained? Would purchase thee a thousand thousand friends, Give physic to the sick, ease to the pained ? Lending him wit, that to bad debtors lends: [back, The poor, lame, blind, halt, creep, cry out for thee? O, this dread night, would'st thou one hour come But they ne'er meet with Opportunity.
I could prevent this storm, and shun this wrack! “ The patient dies while the physician sleeps; “Thou ceaseless lackey to eternity, The orphan pines while the oppressor feeds; With some mischance cross-Tarquin in his flight: Justice is feasting while the widow weeps ;
Devise extremes beyond extremity, Advice is sporting while infection breeds;
To make him curse this cursed crimeful night: Thou grant'st no time for charitable deeds : Let ghastly shadows his lewd eyes affright; Wrath, eavy, treason, rape, and murder's rages, And the dire thought of his committed evil Thy heinous hours wait on them as their pages. Shape every bush a bideous shapeless devil. " When Truth and Virtue have to do with thee, “ Disturb his hours of rest with restless trances, A thousand crosses keep them from thy aid ; Amict him in his bed with bedrid groans; They buy thy help: but sin ne'er gives a fee, Let there bechance him pitiful mischances, He gratis comes, and thou art well appay'd To make him moan, but pity not his moans : As well to hear as grant what he hath said, Stone him with harden'd hearts, barder than stones; My Collatine would else have come to me
And let mild women to him lose their mildness, Wben Tarquin did, but he was stay'd by thee. Wilder to him than tigers in their wildness.
“ Let him have time to tear his curled hair, “ In vain,” quoth she, “ I live, and seek in vaid Let him bave time against himself to rave,
Some happy mean to end a hapless life. Let bim have time of time's help to despair, I fear'd' by Tarquin's falchion to be slain, Let him have time to live a loathed slave,
Yet for the self-same purpose seek a knife: Let him have time a beggar's orts to crare;
But when I fear'd, I was a loyal wife; And time to see one that by alıns doth live, So am I now:-O no, that cannot be; Disdain to him disdained scraps to give.
Of that true type bath Tarquin rifled me. “ Led bim have time to see his friends his foes, “ O! that is gone, for which I sought to live, And marry fools to mock at him resort :
And therefore now I need not fear to die.
A dying life to living infamy;
Poor helpless help, the treasure stolen away, Have time to wail the abusing of his time.
To burn the guiltless casket where it lay! “ O Time, thou tutor both to good and bad, “ Well, well, dear Collatine, thou shalt not know Teach me to curse him that thou taught'st this ill! The stained taste of violated troth; At his own shadow let the thief run mad,
I will not wrong thy true affection so, Himself himself seek every hour to kill! (spill: To flatter thee with an infringed oath; Such wretched hands such wretched blood should This bastard graff shall never come to growth : For who so base would such an office have
He shall not boast, who did thy stock pollute, As slanderous death's-man to so base a slave ? That thou art doting father of his fruit. “ The baser is he, coming from a king,
“ Nor shall he smile at thee in secret thought, To shame his hope with deeds degenerate; Nor laugh with his companions at thy state; The mightier man, the mightier is the thing But thou shalt know thy interest was not bought That makes him honour'd, or begets him hate; Basely with gold, but stolen from forth thy gate. For greatest scandal waits on greatest state. For me, I am the mistress of my fate, The Moon being clouded presently is miss'd, And with my trespass never will dispense, But little stars may hide them when they list. Till life to death acquit my forc'd offence. “ The crow may bathe his coal-black wings in mire, “ I will not poison thee with my attaint, And unperceiv'd fly with the filth away;
Nor fold my fault in cleanly-coin'd excuses; But if the like the snow-white swan desire,
My sable ground of sin I will not paint, The stain upon his silver down will stay.
To hide the truth of this false night's abuses : Poor grooms are sightless night, kings glorious day. My tongue shall utter all; mine eyes, like sluices, Gnats are unnoted wheresoe'er they fy,
As from a mountain-spring that feeds a dale, But eagles gaz'd upon with every eye.
Shall gush pure streams to purge my impure tale." " Out idle words, servants to shallow fools !
By this, lamenting Philomel had ended Unprofitable sounds, weak arbitrators!
The well-tun'd warble of her nightly scrrow, Busy yourselves in skill-contending schools; And solemn night with slow-sad gait descended Debate where leisure serves with dull debaters; To ugly Hell; when lo, the blushing morrow To trembling clients be you mediators :
Lends light to all fair eyes that light will borrow: For me, I force not argument a straw,
But cloudy Lucrece shames herself to see, Since that my case is past the help of law.
And therefore still in night would cloister'd be. * In vain I rail at Opportunity,
Revealing day throngh every cranny spies, At Time, at Tarquin, and uncheerful Night; And seems to point her out where she sits weeping: In vain I cavil with mine infamy,
To whom she sobbing speaks: “O eye of eyes, (ing; In vain I spuro at my confirm'd despite:
Why pry'st thou through mywindow? leave thy peepThis helpless smoke of words doth me no right. Mock with thy tickling beams eyes that are sleeping; The remedy indeed to do me good,
Brand not my forehead with thy piercing light, Is to let forth my foul defiled blood.
For day hath nought to do what's done by night." “ Poor hand, why quiver'st thou at this decree? Thus cavils she with every thing she sees : Honour thyself to rid me of this shame;
True grief is fond and testy as a child, For if I die, my honour lives in thee,
Who wayward once, his mood with nought agrees, But if I live, thou liv'st in my defame:
Old woes, not infant sorrows, bear him mild; Since thou could'st not defend thy loyal dame, Continuance tames the one; the other wild, And wast afraid to scratch her wicked foe,
Like an unpractis'd swimmer plunging still, Kill both thyself and her for yielding so."
With too much labour drowns for want of skill. This said, from her be-tumbled couch she starteth, So she, decp-drenched in a sea of care, To find some desperate instrument of death. Holds disputation with each thing she views, But this no-glaughter-house no tool imparteth, Aud to herself all sorrow doth compare ; To make more vent for passage of her breath, No object but her passion's strength renews; Which thronging through her lips so vanisheth And as one shifts, another straight ensues: As smoke from Etna, that in air consumes,
Sometime her grief is dumb, and hath no words; Or that which from discharged cannon fumes. Sometime 't is mad, and too much talk affords.
The little tirds that tune their morning's joy,
“ Her house is sackd, her qniet interrupted, Make her moans mad with their sweet melody.
Her mansion batter'd by the enemy; Por mirth doth search the bottom of annoy;
Her sacred temple spotted, spoil'd, corrupted, Sad souls are slain in merry company;
Grossly engirt with daring infamy : Grief best is pleas'd with grief's society:
Then let it not be call'd impiety, True sorrow then is feelingly suffic'd,
If in this blemish'd fort I make some hole, When with like semblance it is sympathiz'd. Through which I may convey this troubled soul. 'T is double death to drown in ken of shore; “ Yet die I will not, till my Collatine He ten times pines, that pines beholding food; Have heard the cause of my untimely death; To see the salve doth make the wound ache more; That he may vow, in that sad hour of mine, Great grief grieves most at that would do it good; Revenge on him that made me stop my breath. Deep woes roll forward like a gentle food,
My stained blood to Tarquin I'll bequeath, Who, being stopp'd, the bounding banks o'erflows: Which by him tainted, shall for him be spent, Grief dallied with nor law nor limit knows. And as his due, writ in my testament. “You mockingbirds, "quoth she, “your tanes entomb " My honour I'll bequeath unto the knife Within your hollow-swelling feather'd breasts ! That wounds my body so dishonoured. And in my hearing be you mute and dumb!' 'T is honour to deprive dishonour'd life; (My restless discord loves no stops nor rests ; The one will live, the other being dead : A woful hostess brooks not merry guests :)
So of shame's ashes shall my fame be bred; Relish your nimble notes to pleasing ears ;
For in my death I murder shameful scorp: Distress likes dumps when time is kept with tears. My shame so dead, mine honour is new-bord. " Come, Philomel, that sing'st of ravishment, “ Dear lord of that dear jewel I have lost, Make thy sad grove in my disheveld hair. What legacy shall I bequeath to thee? As the dank earth weeps at thy languishment, My wesolution, love, shall be thy boast, So I at each sad strain will strain a tear,
By whose example thou reveng'd may'st be. And with deep groans the diapason bear:
How 'Tarquin must be us’d, read it in me: For burtbet-wise I'll hum on Tarquin still, Myself, thy friend, will kill myself, thy foe, While thou on Tereus descant'st, better skill. And, for my sake, serve thou false Tarquin so. * And whiles against a thorn thou bearst thy part, “ This brief abridgement of my will I make: To keep thy sharp wues waking, wretched I, My soul and body to the skies and ground; To imitate thee well, against my heart,
My resolution, husband, do you take; Will fix a sharp knife, to affright mine eye;
Mine honour be the knife's, that makes my wound; Who, if it wink, shall thereon fall and die.
My shame be his that did my fame confound; These means, as frets upon an instrument,
And all my fame that lives, disbursed be Shall tune our beart-strings to true languishment. To those that live, and think no shame of me. «
And for, poor bird, thou sing'st not in the day, “ Thou, Collatine, shalt oversee this will; As shaming any eye should thee behold,
How was I overseen, that thou shalt see it! Some dark deep desert, seated from the way, My blood shall wash the slander of mine ill; That knows nor parching heat nor freezing cold, My life's foul deed, my life's fair end shall free it. Will we find out; and there we will unfold Paint not, faint beart, but stoutly say, so be it. To creatures stern sad tunes, to change their kinds: Yield to my hand; my hand shall conquer thee; Since mea prore beasts, let beasts bear gentle minds. Thou dead, both die, and both shall victors be.” " As the poor frighted deer, that stands at gaze, This plot of death when sadly she had laid, Wildly determining which way to fly,
And wip'd the brinish pearl from her bright eyes, Or one encompass'd with a winding maze,
With untun'd tongue she hoarsely call'd her maid, That cannot tread the way out readily;
Whose swift obedience to her mistress hies; So with herself is she in mutiny,
For fleet-wing'd duty with thought's feathers flies. To live or die which of the twain were better,
Poor Lucrece cheeks unto her maid seem so When life is sham'd, and Death Reprnach's debtor. As winter meads when Sun doth melt their snow. “To kill myself,” quoth she, “alack! what were it, Her mistress she doth give demure good-morrow, But with my body my poor soul's pollution? With soft-slow tongue, true mark of modesty, They that lose half, with greater patience bear it, And sorts a sad look to her lady's sorrow, Than they whose whole is swallow'd in confusion. (For why? her face wore sorrow's livery ;) That mother tries a merciless conclusion,
But durst not ask of her audaciously Who, having two sweet babes, when death takes one, why her two suns were cloud-eclipsed so, Will slay the other, and be nurse to none. Nor why her fair cheeks over-wash'd with woe. “My body or my soul, which was the dearer? But as the earth doth weep, the Sun being set, When the one pure, the other made divine. Each flower moisten'd like a melting eye; Whose love of either to myself were nearer? Even so the maid with swelling drops 'gan wet When both were kept for Heaven and Collatine. Her circled eyde, enforc'd by simpathy Ah me! the bark peeld from the lofty pine, Of those fair suns, set in her mistress' sky, His leaves will wither, and his sap decay;
Who in a salt-wav'd ocean quench their light, Su mast my soul, ber bark being peeld away. Which makes the maid weep like the dewy night..
A pretty while these pretty creatures stand, Her maid is gone, and she prepares to write,
First hovering o'er the paper with her quill :
Some present speed to come and visit me :
Her certain sorrow writ uncertainly.
Her grief, but not her grief's true quality:
No man inveigh against the wither'd flower, Besides, the life and feeling of her passion
Of her disgrace, the better so to clear her [fashion Poor women's faults, that they are so fulfill'd From that suspicion which the world might bear her. With men's abuses: those proud lords, to blame, To shun this blot, she would not blot the letter Make weak-made women tenants to their shame. With words, till action might become them better. The precedent whereof in Lucrece view,
To see sad sights moves more than bear them told; Assail'd by night with circumstances strong For then the eye interprets to the ear Of present death, and shame that might ensue The heavy motion that it doth bebold, By that ber death, to do her husband wrong: When every part a part of woe doth bear. Such danger to resistance did belong,
'T is but a part of sorrow that we hear : That dying fear through all her body spread; Deep sounds make lesser noise than shallow fords, And who cannot abuse a body dead ?
And sorrow ebbs, being blown with wind of words.
Till after a deep groan--" Tarquin from hence?" And blushing on her, with a stedfast eye
But they whose guilt within their bosoms lie, Myself were stirring ere the break of day,
Imagine every eye beholds their blame; And, ere I rose, was Tarquin gone away.
For Lucrece thought he blush'd to see her shame. “ But, lady, if your maid may be so bold, When, silly groom, God wot, it was defect She would request to know your heaviness.” Of spirit, life, and bold audacity.
!” quoth Lucrece; “ if it should be told, Such harmless creatures have a true respect The repetition cannot make it less;
To talk in deeds, while others saucily For more it is than I can well express :
Promise more speed, but do it leisurely : And that deep torture may be call'd a Hell, Even so, this pattern of the worn-ont age When more is felt than one hath power to tell. Pawn'd honest looks, but laid no words to gage. "Go, get me hither paper, ink, and pen His kindled duty kindled her mistrust, Yet save that labour, for I have them here.
That two red fires in both their faces blazed ; What should I say?-One of my husband's men, She thought he blush'd, as knowing Tarquin's lust, Bid thou be ready, by-and-by, to bear
And, blushing with him, wistly on him gazed; A letter to my lord, my love, my dear;
Her earnest eye did make him more amazed : Bid him with speed prepare to carry it:
The more she saw the blood his cheeks replenish, The cause craves haste, and it will soon be writ.” The more she thought he spy'd in her some blemish,
“ O peace
But long she thinks till he return again,
Por much imaginary work was there; Aad yet the duteous rassal scarce is gone. Conceit deceitful, so compact, so kind, The weary time she cannot entertain,
That for Achilles' image stood bis spear, For now 't is stale to sigb, to weep, and groan : Grip'd in an armed hand; himself, behind, So woe bath wearied woe, moan tired moan, Was left unseen, save to the eye of mind: That she her plaints a little while doth stay, A band, a foot, a face, a leg, a head, Pausing for means to mourn some newer way. Stood for the whole to be imagined. At last she calls to mind where hangs a piece And from the walls of strong-besiged Troy Of skilful painting, made for Priam's Troy; When their brave hope, bold Hector, march'd to Before the which is drawn the power of Greece, Stood many Trojan mothers, sharing joy [field, For Helen's rape the city to destroy,
To see their youthful sons bright weapons wield; Threatening cloud-kissing Ilion with annoy ; And to their bope they such odd action yield, Which the conceited painter drew so proud, That, through their light joy, seemed to appear As Heaven (it seem'd) to kiss the turrets bow'd. (Like bright things stain'd) a kind of heavy fear. A thousand lamentable objects there,
And, from the strond of Dardan where they fought, lo scorn of Nature, art gave lifeless life:
To Simois' reedy banks the red blood ran, Many a dry drop seer'd a weeping tear,
Whose waves to imitate the battle sought Shed for the slaughter'd husband by the wife : With swelling ridges; and their ranks began The red blood reek'd to show the painter's strife; To break upon the galled shore, and then And dying eyes gleam'd forth their ashy lights, Retire again, till meeting greater ranks Like dying coals burnt out in tedious nights. They join, and shoot their foam at Simois' banks. There might you see the labouring pioneer To this well-painted piece is Lucrece come, Begrim'd with sweat, and smeared all with dust; To find a face where all distress is stel'd. And from the towers of Troy there would appear Many she sees, where cares have carved some, The rery eyes of men through loop-holes thrust, But none where all distress and dolour dwelld, Gazing apon the Greeks with little lust :
Till she despairing Hecuba beheld, Sach sveet observance in this work was had, Staring on Priam's wounds with her old eyes, That one night see those far-off eyes look sad. Which bleeding under Pyrrhus' proud foot lies. lo great commanders grace and majesty
In her the painter bad anatomis'd You might behold triumphing in their faces; Time's ruin, beauty's wreck, and grim care's reign; in yoath, quick bearing and dexterity;
Her cheeks with chaps and wrinkles were disguis'd; And here and there the painter interlaces
Of what she was, no semblance did remain: Pale covards, marching on with trembling paces; Her blue blood chang'd to black in every vein, Which heartless peasants did so well resemble, [ble. Wanting the spring that those shrunk pipes had fed, That one would swear he saw them quake and trem- Show'd life imprison'd in a body dead. In Ajax and Ulysses, O what art
On this sad shadow Lucrece spends her eyes, Of physiognomy might one behold!
And sbapes her sorrow to the beldame's woes, The face of either 'cipher'd either's heart; Who nothing wants to answer her but cries, 'Their face their manners most expressly told : And itter words to ban her cruel foes: In Ajax' eyes blunt rage and rigour rolld; The painter was no god to lend her those; But the mild glance that sły Ulysses lent,
And therefore Lucrece swears he did her wrong, Show'd deep regard and smiling government. To give her so much grief, and not a tongue. There pleading might yon see grave Nestor stand, “ Poor instrument,” quoth she, “ without a sound, As 't were encouraging the Greeks to fight; I'll tune thy woes with my lamenting tongue: Making sach sober action with his hand,
And drop sweet balm in Priam's painted wound, That it beguil'd attention, charm'd the sight: And rail on Pyrrhus that hath done him wrong. In speech, it seem'd, bis beard, all silver white, And with my tears quench Troy that burns su long; Wagg'd up and down, and from his lips did Ay And with my knife scratch out the angry eyes Thin winding breath, which purld up to the sky. Of all the Greeks that are thine enemies. Abont him were a press of gaping faces,
“ Show me the strumpet that began this stir, Which seem'd to swallow up his sound advice; That with my nails her beauty I may tear. All jointly listening, but with several graces, Thy heat of lust, fond Paris, did incur As if some mermaid did their ears entice; This load of wrath that burning Troy doth bear; Some high, some low, the painter was so nice: Thy eye kindled the fire that burneth here: The scalps of many, almost hid behind,
And here in Troy, for trespass of thine eye, To jump op higher seem'd, to mock the mind. The sire, the son, the dame, and daughter, die. Here one man's hapd lean'd on another's head, “ Why should the private pleasure of some one His nose being shadow'd by his neighbour's ear; Become the public plague of many moe? Here one being throng'd bears back, all blown and Let sin, alone committed, light alone Another, smother'd, seems to pelt and swear; (red; Upon his head that hath transgressed so. And in their rage such signs of rage they bear, Let guiltless souls be freed from guilty woe: As, but for loss of Nestor's golden words,
For one's offence why should so many fall, k seem'd they would debate with angry swords. To plague a private sin in general ?