[PASTORAL 04] THE FOURTH PASTORAL.
1 This Place may seem for Shepherds Leisure made,
2 So lovingly these Elms unite their Shade.
3 Th' ambitious Woodbine, how it climbs, to breathe
4 Its balmy Sweets around on all beneath!
5 The Ground with Grass of cheerful Green bespread,
6 Thro' which the springing Flow'r up-rears its Head.
7 Lo here the King-Cup, of a golden Hue,
8 Medly'd with Daisies white and Endive blue.
9 Hark how the gaudy Goldfinch, and the Thrush,
10 With tuneful Warblings fill that Bramble-Bush! [Page 25]
11 In pleasing Consorts all the Birds combine,
12 And tempt us in the various sSng to join.
13 Up, Argol, then; and to thy Lip apply
14 Thy mellow Pipe, or vocal Musick try:
15 And since our Ewes have graz'd, no harm, if they
16 Lye round and listen, while their Lambkins play.
17 The Place indeed gives Pleasance to the Eye;
18 And Pleasance works the Singer's Fancy high:
19 The Fields breath sweet, and how the gentle Breez
20 Moves ev'ry Leaf, and trembles thro' the Trees.
21 So sweet a Scene ill suits my rugged Lay,
22 And better fits the Musick thou can'st play.
23 No Skill of Musick can I, simple Swain,
24 No fine Device thine Ear to entertain;
25 Albeit some deal I pipe, rude tho' it be,
26 Sufficient to divert my Sheep and me,[Page 26]
27 Yet Colinet (and Colinet has Skill)
28 My Fingers guided on the tuneful Quill,
29 And try'd to teach me on what sounds to dwell,
30 And where to sink a Note, and where to swell.
31 Ah Mico! half my Flock would I bestow,
32 Would Colinet to me his Cunning show.
33 So trim his Sonnets are, I prithee, Swain,
34 Now give us once a Sample of his Strain:
35 For, Wonders of that Lad the Shepherds say,
36 How sweet his Pipe, how ravishing his Lay:
37 The Sweetness of his Pipe and Lay rehearse,
38 And ask what Gift thou pleasest for thy Verse.
39 Since then thou list, a mournful Song I chuse;
40 A mournful Song relieves a mournfull Muse.
41 Fast by the River on a Bank he sate,
42 To weep the lovely Maid's untimely Fate,[Page 27]
43 Fair Stella hight: a lovely Maid was she,
44 Whose Fate he wept, a faithful Shepherd he.
45 Awake my Pipe; in ev'ry Note express
46 Fair Stella's Death, and Colinet's Distress.
47 O woful Day! O Day of Woe! quoth he;
48 And woful I, who live the Day to see!
49 That ever she could die! O most unkind,
50 To go, and leave thy Colinet behind!
51 And yet, why blame I her? Full fain would she,
52 With dying Arms, have clasp'd her self to me:
53 I clasp'd her too; but Death was all too strong,
54 Nor Vows, nor Tears could fleeting Life prolong.
55 Teach me to grieve, with bleating Moan, my Sheep;
56 Teach me, thou ever-flowing Stream, to weep;
57 Teach me ye faint, ye hollow Winds, to sigh,
58 And let my Sorrows teach me how to die:[Page 28]
59 Now Flock, nor Stream, nor Winds can e'er relieve
60 A Wretch like me, for ever born to grieve.
61 Awake, my Pipe; in ev'ry Note express
62 Fair Stella's death, and Colinet's Distress.
63 Ye brighter Maids, faint Emblems of my Fair,
64 With Looks cast down, and with dishevel'd Hair,
65 In bitter Anguish beast your Breasts, and moan
66 Her Hour untimely, as it were your own.
67 Alas the fading Glories of your Eyes
68 In vain we doat upon, in vain you prize:
69 For tho' your Beauty rule the silly Swain,
70 And in his Heart like little Queens you reign;
71 Yet Death will ev'n that ruling Beauty kill,
72 As ruthless Winds the tender Blossoms spill.
73 If either Musick's Voice, or Beauty's charms,
74 Could make him mild, and stay his lifted Arms;[Page 29]
75 My Pipe her Face, her Face my Pipe should save,
76 Redeeming thus each other from the Grave.
77 For see (O baleful Sight!) See where she lyes!
78 The budding Flow'r, unkindly blasted, dies.
79 Awake, my Pipe; in ev'ry Note express
80 Fair Stella's Death, and Colinet's Distress.
81 Unhappy Colinet! What boots thee now
82 To weave fresh Garlands for the Damsel's Brow?
83 Throw by the Lilly, Daffadil and Rose;
84 One of black Yew, and Willow pale, compose,
85 With baneful Henbane, deadly Night-shade drest;
86 A Garland that may witness thy Unrest.
87 My Pipe, whose soothing Sound could Passion move,
88 And first taught Stella's Virgin Heart to love,[Page 30]
89 Untun'd, shall hang upon this blasted Oak,
90 Whence Owls their Dirges sing, and Ravens croak:
91 Nor Lark, nor Linnet shall by Day delight,
92 Nor Nightingale divert my Moan by Night;
93 The Night and Day shall undistinguish'd be,
94 Alike to Stella, and alike to me.
95 Thus sweetly did the gentle Shepherd sing,
96 And heavy Woe within soft Numbers bring:
97 And now that Sheep-hook for my Song I crave.
98 Not this, but one much fairer shalt thou have,
99 Of season'd Elm, where Studs of Brass appear,
100 To speak the Giver's Name, the Month and Year;
101 The Hook of polish'd Steel, the Handle torn'd,
102 And richly by the Graver's Skill adorn'd.
103 O, Colinet, how sweet thy Grief to hear!
104 How does thy Verse subdue the list'ning Ear!
105 Not half so sweet the midnight Winds, that move
106 In drousie Murmurs o'er the waving Grove;
107 Nor dropping Waters, that in Grots distil,
108 And with a tinckling Sound their Caverns fill:
109 So sing the Swans, that in soft Numbers waste
110 Their dying Breath, and warble to the last.
111 And next to thee shall Mico bear the Bell,
112 That can repeat thy peerless Verse so well.
113 But see; the Hills increasing Shadows cast:
114 The Sun, I ween, is leaving us in haste:
115 His weakly Rays faint glimmer thro' the Wood,
116 And bluey Mists arise from yonder Flood.
117 Bid then our Curs to gather in the Sheep:
118 Good Shepherds with their Flocks betimes should sleep:[Page 32]
119 For, he that late lyes down, as late will rise,
120 And, Sluggard like, 'till Noon-day snoring lyes;
121 While in their Folds his injur'd Ewes complain,
122 And after dewy Pastures bleat in vain.