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And not far off her cousin dead and rotting,
Thínks 'twere not far amiss she too should die
Were 't but for the sake of such good company,
And being besides in so convenient place,
And draws out of the sheath her husband's dagger
And sheathes it in her bosom, there to rust,
And dies outright. The watch seize friar Laurence
And let him go again; and there 's an end;
And more 's the pity, seeing there was never
Of perfect truelove a more perfect model,
Never a story of more pleasant woe
Than this of Juliet and her Romeo.
DALKEY LODGE, DALKEY; May 4, 1855.
Fár in a désert island in the midst
Of the Mediterránean lived, long years ago,
A wrinkled, withered hag, called Sycorax,
With Caliban her son, an uncouth savage
And worshipper, like her, of Setebos,
Whoever Setebos was. The old witch died
And Caliban reigned alone in the desert island,
When one day in a leaky boat arrived,
With his books of magic and his infant daughter,
Milan's Duke, Próspero, expelled his duchy
By his usurping brother, Antonio,
And turned adrift; black day for Caliban,
Whó, as a matter of course, is robbed of all,
And civilized, and taught a new religion,
And made to fetch and carry for a master
And for his master's daughter, sweet Miranda,
Now growing to a woman, and at last
A woman grown, who of no other men
Knows in the world but Caliban and her father,
Though I 'll not swear she has never heard of spirits,
Her father being a sorcerer, and dealing
Lárgely with creatures of that Natural Order,
Dárkening the sun by their means, raising storms,
And doing with equal ease all possible things
And all impossible. Especially
One Ariel was his favorite, a blythe spirit
Whom, when he came to the island first, he found
Pégged in a clóven pine - "A spirit pegged !".
Aye, to be sure, for Sycorax was a witch,
And witches can as easily peg spirits
Ínto cloven pines, as tapsters can peg spiles
Ínto beer barrels - and there the spirit was howling,
And writhing to get out, now twelve whole winters,
When Prospero came, and, the dead witch defying,
Widened the pine-tree rift and let him out.
Another twelve years and we find the spirit
On board the king of Naples' ship in the offing,
Frightening the king of Naples and his friend
And protégé, the usurping Duke Antonio,
Now playing Jack o' lantern on the mast,
Now running up and down the shrouds like wildfire,
Now firing squibs and crackers in the cabin,
Bút in the long run quite goodnaturedly
Sáving them all from foundering in the tempest
He had broúght upon them by his master's orders,
And sound and dry into his master's hand
Delivering both the usurper and the king,
And the king's drunken jester, drunken butler,
And handsome son; of whom Miranda chooses,
Áfter a game at chess, the last for husband,
The wedding ceremonial being however
Deferred, for want of a priest, till safe return
Of the high contrácting Powers to Christendom
With the drunken jester and the drunken butler,
And wicked brother Antonio freely pardoned
Without his even so much as asking pardon
Or promising amendment or saying thánk ye;
And so breaks off, a little abrupt, the story,
Leaving us to surmise how they got home,
And wondering often whether they took with them,
Or there behind them left, poor Caliban;
And as for Ariel who can't well refuse,
Háving supplied the storm that brought it thither,
To find fair weather for the ship returning,
Hé 's to have leáve, this last turn served, to go
And shift for himself and keep clear for the future
Of witches, cloven pines, and Dukes of Milan.
Lórd, what delight the enactment of this story
By fúll grown men and women gives to children!
And how I laughed, when I was seven years old,
At all the queer things staggering Trinculo said,
And hid my head when Caliban crawled out,
And peeped again when it was Ariel flying,
And wondered why 'twas not at blindman's buff
But chess the king's son and Duke's daughter played,
And hated the bad duke, and loved the good one
With his enchanter's wand and long, striped coat!
Alás, those happy days of seven years old
For mé are fled, and with them fled, for me,
Tom Thumb and Cinderella and The Tempest!
DALKEY LODGE, DALKEY; May 15, 1855.
The king of England meets the king of France
And shákes hands with him in a field near Ardres ;
The Duke of Buckingham 's accused of treason,
Tried and condemned, and séts off in a barge
For Tówer Hill, there to have his head chopped off;
Katharine of Árragon, poor virtuous queen!
Has hér trial too, and, being repudiated,
Diés broken hearted in Kimbolton castle;
Proud Wolsey blooms and ripens in the sun
Of royal favor till a cloud between
Him and the sún comes, and he droops and fades
And shrívels up, and begs a little earth
And leáve to lay his bones in Leicester Abbey,
And dies at eight p. m. and goes to heaven;
The king sees Anna Boleyn at a ball
And takes her out to dance, and kisses her,
And gives her Kátharine's warm place in his bed;
The young queen's coronation is a sight
Ángels look down upon from heaven with envy:
The prayers, the benedictions, holy chrism,
The ball and sceptre and the bird of peace,
The happy crowds of gaping, wondering faces,
The anthem and the full choir and the organ,
The battle-ax-men and the halberdiers,
The golden circlet placed by England's primate,
In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,
Upon the fairest of the six fair brows
Whose happy fortune 'tis, one after th' other,
To please for a while the taste of scrupulous Henry;
And, not least gazed at of the brave assembly,
The heretic doctor, placed for his heresy
At the head of all the bishops and archbishops,
The same good man who, give him time enough,
Sháll, in the sight of some of those there gazing,
Abominate and abjure his heresy;
Nay, far more curious and delectable sight!
Abominate and abjure his abjuration;
A lying-in comes next, with cake and caudle;
And thereupon a christening, where the same
Half-heretic doctor gossips, and foretelling
The blessings kind heaven has in store for the baby,
Ignóres, with true prophetic skill, the blessings
The sáme kind heáven has in store for the báby's mother
And the wise próphet's self. So ends the story,
And what do you think it 's called ? the unfortunate duke?
Or good archbishop? or bad cardinal ?
Or meeting of their highnesses at Ardres ?
Or Katharine’s divorce? or Anna Boleyn's
Woóing, or lying-in, or coronation ?
Or happy Christening of Elizabeth ?
Nó; but it 's called, after the peg on which
The nine odd scraps are hung, King Henry the Eighth.
DALKEY LODGE, DALKEY (IRELAND); May 18, 1855.