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Of every sort, which in that meadow grew, Them heavenly borne, or to be that same They gathered some; the violet pallid payre blew,
30 Which through the skie draw Venus silver The little dazie, that at evening closes,
teeme; The virgin lillie, and the primrose trew, For sure they did not seeme With store of vermeil roses,
To be begot of any earthly seede, To decke their bridegromes posies
But rather angels or of angels breede: Against the brydale day, which was not Yet were they bred of Somers-heat, they long:
35 say, Sweete Themmes, runne softly, till I In sweetest season, when each flower and end my song
The earth did fresh aray; With that I saw two swannes of goodly So fresh they seem'd as day, hewe
Even as their brydale day, which was not Come softly swimming downe along the long: lee;1
Sweete Themmes, runne softly, till I end Two fairer birds I yet did never see:
my song. The snow which doth the top of Pindus strew
40 Then forth they all out of their baskets Did never whiter shew,
drew Nor Jove himselfe, when he a swan would Great store of flowers, the honour of the be
field, For love of Leda, whiter did appear: That to the sense did fragrant odours Yet Leda was, they say, as white as he,
75 Yet not so white as these, nor nothing All which upon those goodly birds they neare:
45 threw, So purely white they were,
And all the waves did strew, That even the gentle streame, the which That like old Peneus waters they did them bare,
seeme, Seem'd foule to them, and bad his bil- When downe along by pleasant Tempes
shore, To wet their silken feathers, least they Scattred with flowres, through Thessaly might
80 Soyle their fayre plumes with water not so That they appeare, through lillies plenfayre,
teous store, And marre their beauties bright,
Like a brydes chamber flore. That shone as heavens light,
Two of those nymphes, meane while, two Against their brydale day, which was not garlands bound long:
Of freshest flowres which in that mead Sweete Themmes, runne softly, till I they found, end my song.
The which presenting all in trim array, 85
Their snowie foreheads therewithall they Eftsoones the nymphes, which now had crownd, flowers their fill,
Whil'st one did sing this lay, Ran all in haste to see that silver brood, Prepar'd against that day, As they came floating on the christal flood; Against their brydale day, which was not Whom when they sawe, they stood amazed long: still,
Sweete Themmes, runne softly, till I end Their wondring eyes to fill.
90 Them seem'd they never saw a sight so fayre,
60 “Ye gentle birdes, the worlds faire ornaOf fowles so lovely, that they sure did ment, deeme
And heavens glorie, whom this happie
Doth leade unto your lovers blissfull At length they all to mery London came, bower,
To mery London, my most kyndly nurse, Joy may you have and gentle hearts con- That to me gave this lifes first native
tent Of your loves couplement:
95 Though from another place I take my And let faire Venus, that is Queene of
An house of auncient fame. With her heart-quelling sonne upon you There when they came, whereas those smile,
bricky towres, Whose smile, they say, hath vertue to The which on Themmes brode aged backe
doe ryde, All loves dislike, and friendships faultie Where now the studious lawyers have their guile
bowers, For ever to assoile.
There whylome wont the Templer Knights Let endlesse peace your steadfast hearts to byde,
Till they decayd through pride: And blessed plentie wait upon your bord; Next whereunto there standes a stately And let your bed with pleasures chast place, abound,
Where oft I gayned giftes and goodly That fruitfull issue may to you afford,
grace Which may your foes confound, 105 Of that great lord which therein wont to And make your joyes redound,
dwell, Upon your brydale day, which is not long: Whose want too well now feeles my Sweete Themmes, run softlie, till I end freendles case:
140 my song.”
But ah! here fits not well
Olde woes, but joyes to tell, So ended she; and all the rest around Against the bridale daye, which is not To her redoubled that her undersong,
long: Which said, their bridale daye should not Sweete Themmes, runne softly, till I end be long
my song And gentle Eccho from the neighbour ground
Yet therein now doth lodge a noble Their accents did resound.
145 So forth those joyous birdes did passe Great Englands glory and the worlds wide along,
wonder, Adowne the lee, that to them murmurde Whose dreadfull name late through all low,
Spaine did thunder, As he would speake, but that he lackt a And Hercules two pillors standing neere tong,
Did make to quake and feare. Yeat did by signes his glad affection show, Faire branch of honor, flower of chevalrie, Making his streame run slow.
That fillest England with thy triumphes And all the foule which in his flood did fame,
Joy have thou of thy noble victorie, Gan flock about these twaine, that did ex- And endlesse happinesse of thine owne
cell The rest so far as Cynthia doth shend That promiseth the same: The lesser starres. So they, enranged well, That through thy prowesse and victorious Did on those two attend,
155 And their best service lend,
Thy country may be freed from forraine Against their wedding day, which was not harmes; long:
And great Elisaes glorious name may Sweete Themmes, run softly, till I end ring my song.
Through al the world, fil'd with thy wide
Which some brave Muse may sing
A rain of tears, a cloud of dark disdain, To ages following,
Hath done the wearied cords great hinL'pon the brydale day, which is not long: derance; Sweete Themmes, runne softly, till I Wreathèd with error and eke with ignoend my song.
The stars be hid that led me to this pain; From those high towers this noble lord Drowned is Reason, that should me issuing,
comfort; Like radiant Hesper when his golden And I remain, despairing of the port.
DESCRIPTION OF SPRING, WHEREfeature,
IN EACH THING RENEWS, SAVE Beseeming well the bower of anie queene,
ONLY THE LOVER With gifts of wit and ornaments of nature,
The sootel season that bud and bloom Fit for so goodly stature:
forth brings, That like the twins of Jove they seem'd in
With green hath clad the hill and eke the sight,
vale; Which decke the bauldricke of the heavens bright.
The nightingale with feathers new she They two, forth pacing to the rivers side, The turtle to her make hath told her tale:
sings; Received those two faire brides, their loves
Summer is come, for every spray now delight,
176 Which, at th' appointed tyde,
The hart hath hung his old head on the Each one did make his bryde,
pale; Against their brydale day, which is not
The buck in brake his winter coat he long:
flings; Sweete Themmes, runne softly, till I end
The fishes flete with new repaired scale; my song.
The adder all her slough away she slings;
The swift swallow pursueth the flies smale; ELIZABETHAN SONNETEERS
The busy bee her honey now she mings. 11
worn, that was the flowers' bale:
And thus I see among these pleasant SIR THOMAS WYATT (1603?-1642)
things THE LOVER COMPARETH HIS
Each care decays, and yet my sorrow
springs! STATE TO A SHIP IN PERILOUS STORM TOSSED ON THE SEA
SIR PHILIP SIDNEY (1654-1686) My galley, charged with forgetfulness, Thorough sharp seas, in winter nights
From ASTROPHEL AND STELLA 'Tween rock and rock; and eke mine
enemy, alas, That is my lord, steereth with cruelness; Loving in truth, and fain in verse my love And every oar, a thought in readiness, 5
to show As though that death were light in such a That she, dear she, might take some case;
pleasure of my pain,An endless wind doth tear the sail apace Of forced sighs and trusty fearfulness;
face of woe,
in my way:
Pleasure might cause her read, reading
XXXIX might make her know,
Come, Sleep! O Sleep, the certain knot of Knowledge might pity win, and pity grace obtain,
The baiting-place of wit, the balm of I sought fit words to paint the blackest
The poor man's wealth, the prisoner's reStudying inventions fine, her wits to enter
Th'indifferent judge between the high and Oft turning others' leaves, to see if thence
low; would flow
With shield of proof shield me from out Some fresh and fruitful showers upon my the prease
5 sunburned brain.
Of those fierce darts Despair at me doth But words came halting forth, wanting
throw: Invention's stay;
O make in me those civil wars to cease; Invention, Nature's child, fled step-dame I will good tribute pay, if thou do so. Study's blows;
Take thou of me smooth pillows, sweetest And others' feet still seemed but strangers
A chamber deaf of noise and blind of Thus, great with child to speak, and help
light, less in my throes,
A rosy garland and a weary head: Biting my truant pen, beating myself And if these things, as being thine in for spite;
right, “Fool,” said my Muse to me, “ look in
Move not thy heavy grace, thou shalt thy heart, and write!”
Livelier than elsewhere, Stella's image XXXI
XLI With how sad steps, O Moon, thou climb'st the skies!
Having this day my horse, my hand, my How silently, and with how wan
Guided so well that I obtained the prize, What, may it be that even in heavenly Both by the judgment of the English place
eyes That busy archer his sharp arrows tries! And of some sent from that sweet enemy Sure, if that long-with-love-acquainted France; eyes
5 Horsemen my skill in horsemanship Can judge of love, thou feel'st a lover's advance,
Town folks my strength; a daintier judge I read it in thy looks: thy languished applies grace
His praise to sleight which from good use To me, that feel the like, thy state de- doth rise; scries.
Some lucky wits impute it but to chance; Then, even of fellowship, O Moon, tell Others, because of both sides I do take
My blood from them who did excel in Is constant love deemed there but want of this, wit?
Think Nature me a man-at-arms did Are beauties there as proud as here they
How far they shot awry! the true cause Do they above love to be loved, and is, yet
Stella looked on, and from her heavenly Those lovers scorn whom that love face doth possess?
Sent forth the beams which made so Do they call virtue there ungrateful- fair my race. ness?
With which my silly bark was tossèd sore, EDMUND SPENSER (15627-1699) I do at length descry the happy shore, 5
In which I hope ere long for to arrive:
Fair soil it seems from far, and fraught
with store XXIV
Of all that dear and dainty is alive. When I behold that beauty's wonderment, Most happy he that can at last achieve And rare perfection of each goodly part, The joyous safety of so sweet a rest; Of nature's skill the only complement, Whose least delight sufficeth to deprive I honor and admire the Maker's art. Remembrance of all pains which him opBut when I feel the bitter, baleful smart 5 pressed. Which her fair eyes unwares do work in All pains are nothing in respect of this, me,
All sorrows short that gain eternal That death out of their shiny beams do bliss.
dart, I think that I a new Pandora see: Whom all the gods in council did agree Fresh Spring, the herald of love's mighty Into this sinful world from heaven to send, king, That she to wicked men a scourge should In whose coat-armor richly are displayed be,
All sorts of flowers the which on earth do For all their faults with which they did spring, offend.
In goodly colors gloriously arrayed; But since ye are my scourge, I will Go to my love, where she is careless laid, 5 intreat
Yet in her winter's bower not well awake; That for my faults ye will me gently Tell her the joyous time will not be stayed, beat.
Unless she do him by the forelock take; XXXIV
Bid her therefore herself soon ready make
To wait on Love amongst his lovely Like as a ship, that through the ocean wide
crew; By conduct of some star doth make her
Where everyone that misseth then her way,
make Whenas a storm hath dimmed her trusty Shall be by him amerced with penance guide,
due. Out of her course doth wander far astray;
Make haste, therefore, sweet love, whilst So I, whose star, that wont with her bright
it is prime; ray
For none can call again the passed Me to direct, with clouds is overcast,
time. Do wander now in darkness and dismay, Through hidden perils round about me
One day I wrote her name upon the Yet hope I well, that when this storm is
But came the waves and washed it away; My Helicé, the lodestar of my life, Will shine again, and look on me at last, Again I wrote it with a second hand,
But came the tide and made my pains With lovely light to clear my cloudy grief; Till then I wander careful, comfort
“Vain man,” said she, “that dost in vain less,
5 In secret sorrow and sad pensiveness.
A mortal thing so to immortalize:
For I myself shall like to this decay,
And eke my name be wiped out like-