« AnteriorContinuar »
Forsaken Truth long seeks ber love,
And makes the Lyon mild,
Marres blind Devotions mart, and falls
In band of Leachour vild.
Ought is there under heav'ns wide hollowness
That moves more dear compassion of mind, Than beauty brought t’unworthy wretchedness Through envy's snares, or fortunes freaks unkind: I, whether lately through her brightness blind, Or through allegiance and fast fealty, Which I do owe unto all woman-kind,
Feel my heart pierct with so great agony,
When such I see, that all for pity I could dye.
And now it is impassioned so deep,
For fairest Unas fake, of whom I sing,
these lines with tears do steep,
To think how the through guileful handleing,
Though true as touch, though daughter of a King,
Though fair as ever-living wight was fair,
Though nor in word nor deed ill meriting,
Is from her Knight divorced in despair,
And her due Love's deriv'd to that vile Witches sharo,
Yet the most faithful Lady all this while
Forsaken, woeful solitary maid
Far from all peoples prease, as in exile,
In wilderness and wastful deserts strayd
To seek her Knight; who, subtilly betrayd
Through that late vision, which th'enchanter wrought
Had her abandon'd. She of nought afraid,
Through woods and wastness wide him daily fought; Yet wished tydings none of him unto her brought.
One day, nigh weary of the irksome way,
From her unhafty beast she did alight,
And on the grass her dainty limbs did lay
In secret shadow, far from all mens sight :
From her fair head her fillet she undight,
And laid her stole aside. Her Angels face
As the great eye of heaven shined bright,
And made a fun-fhine in the shady place:
Did never mortal eye behold such heavenly grace.
It fortuned out of the thickest wood
A ramping Lyon rushed suddainly,
Hunting full greedy after salvage blood;
Soon as the royal virgin he did spy,
With gaping mouth at her ran greedily,
To have attonce devour'd her tender corse :
But to the prey when as he drew more nigh,
His bloody rage afswaged with remorse.
And with the fight amaz'd, forgat his furious force.
Instead thereof he kist her weary feet,
And lickt her lilly hands with fawning tong,
As he her wronged innocence did weet.
O! how can beauty master the most strong,
And simple truth subdue avenging wrong!
Whose yielded pride, and proud submission,
Still dreading death, when she had marked long,
Her heart 'gan melt in great compassion,
And drizling tears did shed for pure affection.
The Lyon, Lord of every beast in field,
Quoth she, his princely puissance doth abate,
And mighty proud, to humble weak does yield,
Forgetful of the hungry rage, which late
Him prickt, in pity of my fad estate:
But he my Lyon, and my noble Lord,
How does he find in cruel heart to hate
Her that him lov’d, and ever most ador'd,
As the God of my life? why hath he me abhord ?
Redounding tears did choke th' end of her plaint,
Which softly ecchoed from the neighbour wood;
And sad to see her sorrowful constraint,
The kingly beast upon her gazing stood;
With pity calm’d, down fell his angry mood :
At last, in close heart shutting up her pain,
Arose the virgin born of heavenly brood,
And to her snowy palfrey got again,
To seek her strayed champion if she might attain.
The Lyon would not leave her defolate,
But with her went along, as a strong guard
Of her chafte person and a faithful mate,
Of her fad troubles and misfortunes hard :
Still when she slept, he kept both watch and ward :
And when she wakt, he waited diligent,
With humble service to her will prepar’d:
From her fair eyes he took commandement,
And ever by her looks conceived her intent.
Long she thus travelled through deferts wide,
By which she thought her wandring Knight should pass,
Yet never íhew of living wight espide ;
Till that at length she found the trodden grass,
In which the tract of peoples footing was,
Under the steep foot of a mountain hoare ;
The same she follows, till at last she has
A Damzel spide, Now footing her before,
That on her thoulders fad a pot of water bore.
To whom approching, she to her 'gan call,
To weet it dwelling place were nigh at hand;
But the rude wench her answered nought at all,
She could not hear, nor speak, nor understand;
Till seeing by her side the Lyon stand,
With suddain fear her pitcher down the threw,
And fied away : for never in that land
Face of fair Lady she before did view,
And that dread Lyons look her cast in deadly hew.
Full fast she Aed, ne ever looke behind,
As if her life upon the wager lay ;
And home she came, whereas her mother blind
Sate in eternal night : nought could she say ;
But suddain catching hold, did her dismay
With quaking hands, and other signs of fear:
Who full of ghastly fright and cold affray,
'Gan shut the door. By this, arrived there
Dame Una, weary Dame, and entrance did requere.
Which when none yielded, her unruly page
With his rude claws the wicket open rent,
And let her in; where, of his cruel rage
Nigh dead with fear, and faint astonishment,
She found them both in darksome corner pent;
Where that old woman day and night did pray
Upon her beads devoutly penitent ;
Nine hundred Pater-nosters ev'ry day,
And thrice nine hundred Aves she was wont to say.
And to augment her painful penance more,
Thrice every week in ashes she did fit,
And next her wrinkled skin rough fackcloth wore,
And thrice three times did fast from any bit :
But now for fear her beads she did forget.
Whofe needless dread for to remove away,
Fair Una framed words and count'nance fit:
Which hardly doen, at length The ʼgan them pray, That in their cotage small, that night the rest her
may. XV. The day is spent, and cometh droufie night,
When every creature shrouded is in sleep;
Sad Una down her lays in weary plight,
And at her feet the Lyon watch doth keep:
Instead of reít, she does lament and weep
For the late loss of her dear loved Knight,
And sighs, and groans, and evermore does steep
Hler tender breast in bitter tears all night:
All night she thinks too long, and often looks for light,
Now when Aldeboran was mounted hie
Above the shiny Cassiopeias chaire,
And all in deadly Neep did drowned lye,
One knocked at the door, and in would fare ;
He knocked fast, and often curst, and sware,
That ready entrance was not at his call :
For on his back a heavy load he bare
Of nightly stelths, and pilage several,
Which he had got abroad by purchase criminal.
He was to weet a stout and sturdy thief,
Wont to rob churches of their ornaments,
And poor mens boxes of their due relief,
Which given was to them for good intents;
The holy Saints of their rich vestiments
He did disrobe, when all men careless Nept,
And spoil'd the Priests of their habiliments
Whiles none the holy things in safety kept, Then he by cunning Neights in at the window crept.
And all that he by right or wrong could find,
Unto this house he brought, and did bestow
Upon the daughter of this woman blind,
Abesa, daughter of Corceca Now,
With whom he whoredom us’d, that few did know,
And fed her fat with feast of offerings,
And plenty, which in all the land did grow :
Ne fpared he to give her gold and rings,
And now he to her brought part of his stolen things.
Thus long the door with rage and threats he bet,
Yet of those fearful women none durft rise :
(The Lyon frayed them,) him in to let.
He would no longer stay him to advise,
But open breaks the door in furious wise,
And entring is; when that disdainful beast
Encountring fierce, him suddain doth surprize ;
And seizing cruel claws on trembling breast,
Under his lordly foot him proudly hath supprest.