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Run to your shrouds within these brakes and trees;
mother Circe. Thus I hurl
Enter the Lady. Lady. This way the noise was, if mine ear be true, My best guide now: methought it was the sound 230 Of riot and ill-manag'd merriment; “ Such as the jocund Aute or gamesome pipe “ Stirs up among the loose unletter'd hinds,
“ When, for their teeming Alocks and granges full, “ In wanton dance they praise the bounteous Pan, “ And thank the gods amiss.” I should be loath To meet the rudeness and swill'd insolence Of such late rioters; yet oh! where else Shall I inform my unacquainted feet In the blind mazes of this tangled wood ? 240 Comus aside.] I'll ease her of that care, and be her
guide. Lady. My brothers, when they saw me weary'd out “ With this long way, resolving here to lodge “ Under the spreading favour of these pines,” Stepp'd, as they said, to the next thicket side To bring me berries, or such cooling fruit As the kind hospitable woods provide. “ They left me then when the grey-hooded Even, “ Like a sad votarist in palmer's weeds,
249 “ Rose from the hindmost wheels of Phæbus' wain;" But where they are, and why they come not back, Is now the labour of my thoughts : 'tis likeliest They had engag'd their wand'ring steps too far. “ This is the place, as well as I may guess, “Whence, ev'n now, the tumult of loud mirth “ Was rife, and perfect in my list’ning ear, “ Yet nought but single darkness do I find. “ What might this be? A thousand fantasies
Begin to throng into my memory, “Of calling shapes and beck’ning shadows dire, 260 "" And aery tongues, that syllable mens' names “ On sands, and shores, and desert wildernesses:
“ These thoughts may startie well, but not astound, “ The virtuous mind, that ever walks attended “ By a strong siding champion, Conscience. “O! welcome pure-ey'd Faith, white-handed Hope, “ Thou hov’ring angel, girt with golden wings, « And thou unblemish'd form of Chastity ! “ I see you visibly, and now believe, " That he, the supreme Good (to whom all things ill “ Are but as slavish officers of vengeance) 271 “ Would send a glist'ring guardian, if need were, “ To keep my life and honour unassail'd. “Was I deceiv’d, or did a sable cloud “ Turn forth her silver lining on the night? “I did not err; there does a sable cloud “ Turn forth her silver lining on the night, “ And casts a gleam over this tufted grove." I cannot halloo to my brothers, but Such noise as I can make to be heard farthest 280 I'll venture, for my new enliven'd spirits Prompt me, and they perhaps are not far off.
Oh! if thou have
Comus aside.] Can any mortal mixture of earth's
mould Breathe such divine enchanting ravishment ? “ Sure something holy lodges in that breast, “ And with these raptures moves the vocal air 300 “ To testify his hidden residence : “ How sweetly did they float upon the wings “ Of silence through the empty-vaulted night, “ At ev'ry fall smoothing the raven down “Of darkness till it smil'd have oft heard “My mother Circe, with the Sirens three, “ Amidst the flow'ry-kirtled Naiades, • Culling their potent herbs and baleful drugs, “Who, as they sung, would take the prison'd soul “ And lap it in Elysium : Scylla wept,
310 “ And chid her barking waves into attention, “ And fell Charybdis murmur'd soft applause ; " Yet they in pleasing slumber lull'd the sense, “ And sweet in madness robb’d it of itself; “ But such a sacred and home-felt delight, “ Such sober certainty of waking bliss, “ I never heard till now.”—I'll speak to her, And she shall be my queen.-Hail, foreign wonder!
Whom certain these rough shades did never breed,
Lady. Nay, gentle Shepherd ! ill is lost that praise
any boast of skill, but extreme shift
Com. What chance, good Lady, hath bereft you thus?
spring. Com. And left your fair side all unguarded, Lady! Lady. They were but twain, and purpos'd quick re
Com. “Perhaps forestalling night prevented them?
Com. Two such I saw "what time the labour'd ox « In his loose traces from the furrow came, “ And the swink't hedger at his supper sat ;