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Tell faith it's fled the city,

Tell how the country erreth,
Tell, manhood shakes off pity,
Tell, virtue least preferreth.

And if they do reply,
Spare not to give the lie.

So when thou hast, as I

Commanded thee, done blabbing;
Although to give the lie
Deserves no less than stabbing;

Yet stab at thee who will,
No stab the soul can kill.

The Nymph's Reply to the passionate Shepherd.

IF that the world and love were young,
And truth in every shepherd's tongue,
These pretty pleasures might me move
To live with thee, and be thy love.

But time drives flocks from field to fold,
When rivers rage, and rocks grow cold ;
And Philomel becometh dumb,
And all complain of cares to come.

The flowers do fade, and wanton fields
To wayward winter's reckoning yield;
A honey tongue-a heart of gall,
Is fancy's spring, but sorrow's fall.

Thy gowns, thy shoes, thy beds of roses,
Thy cup, thy kirtle, and thy posies,
Soon break, soon wither, soon forgotten,
In folly ripe, in reason rotten.

Thy belt of straw, and ivy buds,
Thy coral clasps and amber studs ;
All these in me no means can move
To come to thee and be thy love.

But could youth last, and love still breed, Had joys no date—nor age no need, Then these delights my mind might move To live with thee and be thy love.


As at noon Dulcina rested

In her sweet and shady bower, Came a shepherd, and requested

In her lap to sleep an hour.

But from her look

A wound he took
So deep, that for a further boon

The nymph he prays:

Whereto she says;
Forego me now, come to me soon.

But in vain she did conjure him

To depart her presence so, Having a thousand tongues t'allure him, And but one to bid him go.

When lips invite,

And eyes delight,
And cheeks as fresh as rose in June,

Persuade delay

What boots to say,
Forego me now, come to me soon?

He demands, what time for pleasure

Can there be more fit than now? She says, night gives love that leisure Which the day doth not allow,

He says, the sight

Improves delight; Which she denies ; night's murky noon

In Venus' plays

Makes bold (she says); Forego me now, come to me soon.

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But what promise or profession

From his hands could purchase scope ? Who would sell the sweet possession Of such beauty for a hope?

Or for the sight

Of lingering night
Forego the present joys of noon?

Tho' ne'er so fair

Her speeches were,
Forego me now, come to me soon.

How at last agreed these lovers ?

She was fair, and he was young; The tongue may tell what th'


discovers, Joys unseen are never sung.

Did she consent

Or he relent,
Accepts he night, or grants she noon,

Left he her a maid

Or not, she said
Forego me now, come to me soon.



Passions are liken'd best to floods and streams;

The shallow murmur, but the deep are dumb: So, when affections yield discourse, it seems

The bottom is but shallow whence they come. They that are rich in words, must needs discover, They are but poor in that which makes a lover.

Wrong not, sweet mistress of my heart,

The merit of true passion,
With thinking that he feels no smart

Who sues for no compassion.

Since if my plaints were not t' approve

The conquest of thy beauty,
It comes not from defect of love,

But fear t exceed my duty.

For, knowing that I sue to serve,

A saint of such perfection, As all desire, but none deserve

A place in her affection.

I rather choose to want relief,

Than venture the revealing :

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