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Not such the usage I received,
When happye in my father's halle ;
No chilling fears did me appalle.
I rose up
with the cheerful morne, No lark more blithe, no flower more gaye ; And, like the bird that hauntes the thorne,
So merrillie sung the live-long daye.
Say that my beautye is but smalle,
Among court ladies all despised, Why didst thou rend it from that halle,
Where scornful earle,) it well was prizede ?
first to mee made suite, How fayre I was, you oft woulde saye ! And, proude of conquest-plucked the fruite,
Then lefte the blossom to decaye.
Yes, now neglected and despised,
The rose is pale—the lily's deade But hee that once their charms so prized,
Is sure the cause those charms are fledde.
For knowe, when sickening griefè doth preye,
And tender love's repay'd with scorne,
The sweetest beautye will decaye ;
What flow'ret can endure the storme?
At Court I'm tolde is beautye's throne,
Where everye lady's passing rare : The eastern flowers, that shame the sun,
Are not so glowing not so fair.
Then, earle, why didst thou leave those bedds,
Where roses and where lilys vie,
Must sicken-when those gaudes are bye?
'Mong rural beauties I was one,
Among the fields wild flowers are faire ; Some countrye swayne might mee have won,
And thoughte my beautie passing rare.
But, Leicester, (or I much am wronge,)
Or 'tis not beautye fires thy vowes ; Rather ambition's gilded crowne
Makes thee forget thy humble spouse.
Then, Leicester, why, again I pleade,
(The injured surelie may repyne,) Why didst thou wed a countrye maide,
When some fair princesse might be thyne ? Why didst thou praise my humble charmes,
And, oh! then leave them to decaye ? Why didst thou win me to thy armes,
Then leave me to mourne the live-long daye ?
The village maidens of the plaine
Salute me lowly as I goe; Envious, they marke my
silken trayne, Nor think a countesse can have woe.
The simple nymphs ! they little knowe,
How far more happy's their estate
To be contente, than to be greate.
How fare lesse bleste am I than them?
Dailyé to pyne and waste with care! Like the poor plante, that from its stem
Divided-feels the chilling ayre?
Nor (cruel earle !) can I enjoye
The humble charms of solitude ;
By sullen frownes, or pratings rude.
Laste nyghte, as sad I chanced to straye,
The village deathe-belle smote my eare, They winked asyde, and seemed to saye,
Countesse, prepare-thy end is neare.
And now, when happye peasantes sleepe,
Here sit I lonely and forlorne, No one to soothe me as I
weepe, Save Phylomel on yonder thorne.
My spirits flag-my hopes decaye
Still that dread deathe-belle strikes my eare, And many a boding seems to saye,
Countesse, prepare-thy end is neare.
Thus sore and sad that ladye grieved,
In Cuminor Halle so lone and dreare; Full manye a heartfelte sighe shee heaved,
And let falle many a bitter teare.
And ere the dawne of day appeared,
In Cumnor Hall so long and dreare,
And many a cry of mortal feare.
The deathe-belle thrice was hearde to ring,
An aërial voyce was hearde to call, And thrice the raven flapped his wing
Arounde the towers of Cumnor Halle.
The mastiffe howled at village doore,
The oaks were shattered on the greene; Woe was the houre--for never more
That haplesse countesse e'er was seene.
And in that manor now no more
Is chearful feaste and sprightly balle; For ever since that drearie houre
Have spirits haunted Cumnor Halle.
The village maides, with fearful glance,
Avoid the antient moss-growne walle; Nor ever leade the merrye dance
Among the groves of Cumnor Halle.
Full manye a traveller oft hath sighed,
And pensive wepte the countess' falle, As wandering onward they've espied
The haunted towers of Cumnor Halle.