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And lo! behold these talents of their hair,
With twisted metal amorously impleach'd,
I have receiv'd from many a several fair,
(Their kind acceptance weepingly beseech'd)
With the annexions of fair gems enrich’d,
And deep-brain'd sonnets, that did amplify
Each stone's dear nature, worth, and quality.
The diamond ; why, 'twas beautiful and hard,
Whereto his invis'd properties did tend ;
The deep-green emerald, in whose fresh regard
Weak sights their sickly radiance do amend;
The heaven-hued sapphire, and the opal blend
With objects manifold : each several stone,
With wit well blazon'd, smil'd, or made some moan.
Lo! all these trophies of affections hot,
Of pensiv'd and subdued desires the tender,
Nature hath charg'd me that I hoard them not,
But yield them up where I myself must render;
That is, to you, my origin and ender :
For these, of force, must your oblations be,
Since I their altar, you enpatron me.
Oh! then, advance of yours that phraseless hand,
Whose white weighs down the airy scale of praise;
Take all these similes to your own command,
5-his INVIS'D properties–] "Invis’d” may be explained unseen or invisible. Malone considered it "a word of Shakespeare's coining”, and we know of no other example of its use. Possibly, inclos'd.
Hallow'd with sighs that burning lungs did raise;
What me, your minister, for you obeys,
Works under you ; and to your audit comes
Their distract parcels in combined sums.
Lo! this device was sent me from a nun
Or sister sanctified, of holiest note ;
Which late her noble suit in court did shun,
Whose rarest havings made the blossoms dote :
For she was sought by spirits of richest coat,
But kept cold distance, and did thence remove,
To spend her living in eternal love.
But O, my sweet! what labour is 't to leave
The thing we have not, mastering what not strives,
Paling the place which did no form receive;
Playing patient sports in unconstrained gyves?
She that her fame so to herself contrives,
The scars of battle scapeth by the flight,
And makes her absence valiant, not her might.
O! pardon me, in that my boast is true :
The accident which brought me to her eye,
Upon the moment did her force subdue,
And now she would the caged cloister fly;
Religious love put out religion's eye :
Not to be tempted, would she be immur'd,
And now, to tempt all, liberty procur’d.
6 PALING the place—] The 4to. 1609 has “Playing the place”, the compositor having, probably, caught "Playing" from the next line (Malone's emendation).
How mighty then you are, O hear me tell !
The broken bosoms that to me belong,
Have emptied all their fountains in my well,
And mine I pour your ocean all among :
I strong o'er them, and you o'er me being strong,
Must for your victory us all congest,
As compound love to physic your cold breast.
My parts had power to charm a sacred nun,
Who, disciplin'd, aye, dieted in grace,
Believ'd her eyes, when they t' assail begun,
All vows and consecrations giving place.
O most potential love! vow, bond, nor space,
In thee hath neither sting, knot, nor confine,
For thou art all, and all things else are thine.
When thou impressest, what are precepts worth
Of stale example? When thou wilt inflame,
How coldly those impediments stand forth
Of wealth, of filial fear, law, kindred, fame!
Love's arms are peace, 'gainst rule, 'gainst sense, 'gainst
And sweetens, in the suffering pangs it bears,
The aloes of all forces, shocks, and fears.
Now, all these hearts that do on mine depend,
Feeling it break, with bleeding groans they pine ;
And supplicant their sighs to you extend,
To leave the battery that you make 'gainst mine,
Lending soft audience to my sweet design,
1-to charm a sacred nun,] “Nun” is absurdly misprinted sun
And credent soul to that strong-bonded oath,
That shall prefer and undertake my troth. .
This said, his watery eyes he did dismount,
Whose sights till then were levellid on my face ;
Each cheek a river running from a fount
With brinish current downward flow'd apace.
o, how the channel to the stream gave grace!
Who, glaz'd with crystal, gate the glowing roses
That flame through water which their hue incloses.
O father! what a hell of witchcraft lies
In the small orb of one particular tear;
But with the inundation of the eyes
What rocky heart to water will not wear ?
What breast so cold that is not warmed here?
O cleft effect! cold modesty, hot wrath,
Both fire from hence and chill extincture hath !
For lo ! his passion, but an art of craft,
Even there resolv'd my reason into tears ;
There my white stole of chastity I daff'd;
Shook off my sober guards, and civil fears :
Appear to him, as he to me appears,
All melting; though our drops this difference bore,
His poison'd me, and mine did him restore.
In him a plenitude of subtle matter,
Applied to cautels, all strange forms receives,
Of burning blushes, or of weeping water,
Or swooning paleness ; and he takes and leaves,
In either's aptness, as it best deceives,
To blush at speeches rank, to weep at woes,
Or to turn white, and swoon at tragic shows :
That not a heart which in his level came,
Could scape the hail of his all-hurting aim,
Showing fair nature is both kind and tame,
And, veil'd in them, did win whom he would maim :
Against the thing he sought he would exclaim ;
When he most burn'd in heart-wish'd luxury,
He preach'd pure maid, and prais'd cold chastity.
Thus merely with the garment of a grace
The naked and concealed fiend he cover'd ;
That th' unexperient gave the tempter place,
Which, like a cherubin, above them hover'd.
Who, young and simple, would not be so lover'd ?
Ah me! I fell; and yet do question make,
What I should do again for such a sake.
O, that infected moisture of his eye!
O, that false fire, which in his cheek so glow'd !
O, that forc'd thunder from his heart did fly!
O, that sad breath his spongy lungs bestow'd !
O, all that borrow'd motion, seeming ow'd,8
Would yet again betray the fore-betray'd,
And new pervert a reconciled maid !
0, all that borrow'd motion, seeming ow'd,] i.e., seeming own'd. Malone explains the passage thus,-that passion which he borrowed from others so naturally that it seemed real, and his own.