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SWEET Cytherea, sitting by a brook,
With young Adonis, lovely, fresh, and green,
Did court the lad with many a lovely look,
Such looks as none could look but beauty's queen.
She told him stories to delight his ear;
She show'd him favours to allure his
To win his heart, she touch'd him here and there:
Touches so soft still conquer chastity.
But whether unripe years did want conceit,
Or he refus'd to take her figur'd proffer,
The tender nibbler would not touch the bait,
But smile and jest at every gentle offer:
Then fell she on her back, fair queen, and toward;
He rose and ran away; ah fool too froward!
Scarce had the sun dried up the dewy morn,
And scarce the herd gone to the hedge for shade,
When Cytherea, all in love forlorn,
A longing tarriance for Adonis made,
Under an osier growing by a brook,
A brook, where Adon us'd to cool his spleen.
Hot was the day; she hotter that did look
For his approach, that often there had been.
Anon he comes, and throws his mantle by,
And stood stark naked on the brook's green brim;
The sun look'd on the world with glorious eye,
Yet not so wistly, as this queen on him:
He spying her, boune'd in, whereas he stood;
O Jove, quoth she, why was not I a flood?
Fair was the morn, when the fair queen of love,
Paler for sorrow than her milk-white dove,
For Adon's sake, a youngster proud and wild;
Her stand she takes upon a steep-up hill:
Anon Adonis comes with horn and hounds;
She silly queen, with more than love's good will,
Forbade the boy he should not pass those grounds;
Once, quoth she, did I see a fair sweet youth
Here in these brakes deep-wounded with a boar,
Deep in the thigh, a spectacle of ruth!
See in my thigh, quoth she, here was the sore:
She showed hers; he saw more wounds than one,
And blushing fled, and left her all alone.
Venus with [young] Adonis sitting by her,
Under a myrtle shade, began to woo him:
She told the youngling how god Mars did try her,
And as he fell to her, [so] she fell to him.
1 Here a line has dropped out.
Even thus, quoth she, the warlike god embrac'd me;
And then she clipp'd Adonis in her arms :
Even thus, quoth she, the warlike god unlac'd me
As if the boy should use like loving charms.
Even thus, quoth she, he seiz'd on my lips,
And with her lips on his did act the seizure;
And as she fetched a breath, away he skips,
And would not take her meaning nor her pleasure.
Ah! that I had my lady at this bay,
To kiss and clip me till I run away!
Crabbed age and youth
Cannot live together;
Youth is full of pleasance,
Age is full of care:
Youth like summer morn,
Age like winter weather;
Youth like summer brave,
Age like winter bare.
Youth is full of sport,
Age's breath is short,
Youth is nimble, age is lame:
Youth is hot and bold,
Age is weak and cold;
Youth is wild, and age is tame.
Age, I do abhor thee,
Youth, I do adore thee;
O, my love, my love is young!
Age, I do defy thee;
O sweet shepherd, hie thee,
For methinks thou stay'st too long!
Sweet rose, fair flower, untimely pluck'd, soon
Pluck'd in the bud, and vaded in the spring!
Bright orient pearl, alack! too timely shaded!
Fair creature, kill'd too soon by death's sharp
Like a green plum that hangs upon a tree, And falls, through wind, before the fall should be.
I weep for thee, and yet no cause I have;
For why? thou left'st me nothing in thy will.
And yet thou left'st me more than I did crave;
For why? I craved nothing of thee still:
O yes, dear friend, I pardon crave of thee;
Thy discontent thou didst bequeath to me.
Fair is my love, but not so fair as fickle,
Mild as a dove, but neither true nor trusty;
Brighter than glass, and yet, as glass is, brittle,
Softer than wax, and yet, as iron, rusty:
2 vaded] Malone throughout these fragments altered the word to faded, which is generally considered as synonymous; yet Brathwaite, in his Strappado for the Devil, 1615, (the exact reference to which I have mislaid,) speaks of "no fading, vading flower," and other poets make the same distinction between the words.
A lily pale, with damask die to grace her,
None fairer, nor none falser to deface her.
Her lips to mine how often hath she join'd, Between each kiss her oaths of true love swearing! How many tales to please me hath she coin'd, Dreading my love, the loss thereof still fearing! Yet in the midst of all her pure protestings, Her faith, her oaths, her tears and all were jestings.
She burn'd with love, as straw with fire flameth,
She burn'd out love, as soon as straw out burneth;
She fram❜d the love, and yet she foil'd the framing,
She bade love last, and yet she fell a turning.
Was this a lover, or a lecher whether?
Bad in the best, though excellent in neither.
Did not the heavenly rhetorick of thine eye,
'Gainst whom the world could not hold argument,
Persuade my heart to this false perjury?
Vows for thee broke deserve not punishment.
A woman I forswore; but I will prove,
Thou being a goddess, I forswore not thee:
My vow was earthly, thou a heavenly love;
Thy grace being gain'd, cures all disgrace in me.
My vow was breath, and breath a vapour is;
Then thou fair sun, that on this earth doth shine,
Exhale this vapour vow; in thee it is.
If broken, then it is no fault of mine.