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THE DESPAIRING SHEPHERD.
Their rural sports and jocund strains ;
He nourish'd endless woe.
The fatal cause all kindly seek :
He sigh’d, but would not speak.
And ask'd the reason of his woe:
She fear's too much to know.
While I the cruel truth reveal,
But that you bid me tell ?
You are the cause of all my care : Your eyes ten thousand dangers dart, Ten thousand torments vex my heart;
I love, and I despair.' • Too much, Alexis, I have heard : Tis what I thought, 'tis what I fear'd;
And yet I pardon you, (she cried) But you shall promise ne'er again
To breathe your vows or speak your pain :--He bow'd, obey'd, and died.
HER RIGHT NAME.
Admiring this and blaming that,
Poets and painters never are secure;
Or thou draw beauty, and not feel its pow'r?
To great Apelles when young Ammon brought
The darling idol of his captive heart, And the pleas'd nymph, with kind attention, sat
To have her charms recorded by his art;
The amorous master own'd her potent eyes,
Sigh'd when he look'd, and trembled as he drew; Each flowing line confirm'd his first surprise,
And as the piece advanc'd, the passion grew. While Philip's son, while Venus' son, was near,
What different tortures does his bosom feel? Great was the rival, and the god severe;
Nor could he hide his flame, nor durst reveal. The prince, renown'd in bounty as in arms,
With pity saw the ill-conceald distress; Quitted his title to Campaspe's charms,
And gave the fair-one to the friend's embrace.
Thus the more beauteous Chloe sat to thee,
Good Howard, emulous of the Grecian art; But happy thou, from Cupid's arrow free,
And fames, that pierc'd thy predecessor's heart. Had thy poor breast receiv'd an equal pain,
Had I been vested with the monarch's pow'r, Thou must have sigh'd, unlucky youth, in vain,
Nor from my bounty hadst thou found a cure. Though, to convince thee that the friend did feel
A kind concern for thy ill-fated care; . I would have sooth'd the flame I could not heal,
Giv'n thee the world, though I withheld the fair.
THE SHEPHERD'S WEEK.
In Six Pastorals,
..--- Libeat mihi sordida rura, Atque humiles habitare casas
; , that in this
To the courteous Reader.
Other poet travailing in this plain highway of pastoral know I none. Yet, certes, such it behoveth a pastoral to be, as nature in the country affordeth; and the manners also meetly, copied from the rustical folk therein. In this also my love to my native country Britain much pricketh me forward, to describe aright the manners of our own honest and laborious ploughmen, in no wise, sure, more unworthy a British poet's imitation, than those of Sicily or Arcady; albeit, not ignorant I am what a rout and rabblement of critical gallimawfry hath been made of late days by certain young men of insipid delicacy,, concerning I wist not what Golden Age, and other outrageous conceits, to which they would confine pastoral ; whereof, I avow, I account nought at all, knowing no age so justly to be instiled Golden, as this of our sovereign lady Queen Anne.
This idle trumpery (only fit for schools and
Ωιπολος οκκ' εσoρη τας μηχαδας οια βαλεωνία
fooleries of this gay, Gothic garniture, wherewith they so nicely bedeck their court clowns, or clown courtiers, (for which to call them rightly, I wot not) as would a prudent citizen journeying to his country farms, should he find them occupied by people of this motley make, instead of plain, down-right, hearty, cleanly folk, such as be now tenants to the burgesses of this realm.
Furthermore, it is my purpose, gentle Reader, to set before thee, as it were, a picture, or rather lively landscape of thy own country, just as thou mightest see it, didst thou take a walk into the fields at the proper season; even as Maister Milton hath elegantly set forth the same.
As one who long in populous city pent,
Or dairy, each rural sight, each rural sound. Thou wilt not find my shepherdesses idly piping on oaten reeds; but milking the kine, tying up the sheaves, or if the hogs are astray, driving them to their styes. My shepherd gathereth none other nosegays but what are the growth of our own fields; he sleepeth not under myrtle shades, but under a hedge; nor doth he vigilantly defend his flocks from wolves, because there are none, as Maister Spenser well observeth,
Well is known that since the Saxon King
Nor in all Kent nor in Christendom. For as much as I have mentioned Maister Spenser, soothly I must acknowledge him a bard of sweetest memorial. Yet hath his shepherd's boy at sometimes raised his rustic reed to rhymes more rumbling than rural. Diverse grave points also hath he handled of churchly matter, and doubts in religion daily arising, to great clerks only appertaining. What liketh' me best are his names, indeed right simple and meet for the country, such as Lobbin, Cuddy, Hobbinol, Dig: gon, and others, some of which I have made bold to borrow. Moreover, as he called his Eclogues, The Shepherd's Calendar, and divided the same into the twelve months, I have chosen (peradventure not over rashly) to name mine by the days of the week, omitting Sunday or the Sabbath, ours being supposed to be Christian shepherds, and to be then at church-worship. Yet further of many of Maister Spenser's Eclogues it may be observed,