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“ what excuse can my invention make,
Within his thought ber heavenly image sits,
And therein heartens up his servile powers,
Who, flatter'd by their leader's jocund show, Or were he not my dear friend, this desire
Stuff up his lust, as minutes fill up hours; Might have excuse to work upon his wife;
And as their captain, so their pride doth grow, As in revenge or quittal of such strife:
Paying more slavish tribute than they owe.
By reprobate desire thus madly led,
Each one by him enforc'd, retires his ward;
Which drives the creeping thief to some regard :
Night-wandring weasels shriek to see him there; Shall by a painted cloth be kept in awe."
They fright him, yet he still pursues his fear.
As each unwilling portal yields him way,
And blows the smoke of it into his face,
But his hot heart, wbich fond desire doth scorch,
Lucretia's glove, wherein her needle sticks;
And griping it, the neeld bis finger pricks: O how her fear did make her colour rise!
As who should say, “ This glove to wanton tricks First red as roses that on lawn we lay,
Is not inur'd; return again in haste ; Then white as lawn, the roses took away.
Thou seest our mistress' ornaments are chaste.”
* And how her hand, in my hand being lock'd,
But all these poor forbiddings could not stay him;
“ Why hunt I then for colour or excuses ? “ So, so," quoth be, “these lets attend the time,
To add a more rejoicing to the prime,
Pain pays the income of each precious thing ; (sands,
Huge rocks, high winds, strong pirates, shelves and
That shuts him from the Heaven of his thought,
That for his prey to pray he doth begin,
Having solicited the eternal power,
That bis foul thoughts might compass his fair fair,
Ev'n there he starts:-quoth he, “ I must deflower;
" Then Love and Fortune be my gods, my guide! What could he see, but mightily he noted ? My will is back'd witb resolution :
What did he note, but strongly he desired ? Tboughts are but dreams till their effects be tried, What he beheld, on that he firmly doted, The blackest sin is clear'd with absolution ;
And in his will his wilful eye he tired.
Her azure veios, her alabaster skin,
Hjs rage of lust by gazing qualified;
Unto a greater uproar tempts his veins : Into the chamber wickedly he stalks,
And they, like straggling slaves for pillage fighting, And gazeth on her yet unstained bed.
Obdurate vassals, fell exploits effecting, The curtains being close, about he walks,
In bloody death and ravishment delighting, Rolling his greedy eye-balls in his head :
Nor children's tears, nor mothers' groans respecting, By their bigh treason is his heart misled;
Swell in their pride, the onset still expecting : Which gives the watch-word to his hand full soon, | Anon his beating heart, alarum striking, To draw the cloud that hides the silver Moon. Gives the hot charge, and bids them do their liking. Look as the fair and firy-pointed Sun,
His drumming heart cheers up his burning eye, Rushing from forth a cloud, bereaves our sight; His eye commends the leading to his hand; Even so, the curtain drawn, his eyes begun
His hand, as proud of such a dignity, To wink, being blinded with a greater light : Smoking with pride, march'd on to make his stand Whether it is, that she reflects so bright,
On her bare breast, the heart of all her land;
They mustering to the quiet cabinet
| Do tell her she is dreadfully beset, In his clear bed might have reposed still:
| And fright her with confusion of their cries: But they must ope, this blessed league to kill; She, much amaz'd, breaks ope her lock'd-up eyes, And holy-thoughted Lucrece to their sight Who, peeping forth this tumult to behold, Must sell her joy, her life, her world's delight. Are by his faming torch dimm'd and control'd.
Thus he replies: “ The colour in thy face Here with a cockatrice dead-killing eye, (That even for anger makes the lily pale,
He rouseth up himself, and makes a pause, And the red rose blush at her own disgrace) While she, the picture of pure piety, Shall plead for me, and tell my loving tale: Like a white hind under the grype's sharp claws, Under that colour am I come to scale
Pleads in a wilderness, where are no laws, Thy never-conquer'd fort; the fault is thine, To the rough beast that knows no gentle right, For those thine eyes betray thee unto mine. Nor aught obeys but his foul appetite. “ Thus I forestall thee, if thou mean to chide: Look, when a black-fac'd cloud the world doth threat, Thy beauty hath ensnar'd thee to this night, In bis dim mist th' aspiring mountains hiding, Where thou with patience must my will abide, From earth's dark womb some gentle gust doth get, My will that marks thee for my earth's delight, Which blows these pitchy vapours from their biding, Which I to conquer sought with all my might; Hindering their present fall by this dividing; But as reproof and reason beat it dead,
So his unhallow'd haste her words delays, By thy bright beauty was it newly bred.
And moody Pluto winks while Orpheus plays. “ I see what crosses my attempt will bring; Yet, foul pight-waking cat, he doth but dally, I know what thorns the growing rose defends; While in his hold-fast foot the weak mouse panteth: I think the honey guarded with a sting;
Her sad behaviour feeds his vulture folly, All this, beforehand, counsel comprebends: A swallowing gulf that ev'n in plenty wanteth: But will is deaf, and hears no heedful friends ; His ear her prayers admits, but his heart granteth Only he hath an eye to gaze on beauty,
No penetrable entrance to her plaining; And dotes on what he looks, 'gainst law or duty. Tears harden lust, though marble wear with raining. “ I have debated, even in my soul,
Her pity-pleading eyes are sadly fixed What wrong, what shame, what sorrow I shall breed; In the remorseless wrinkles of his face; But nothing can affection's course control,
Her modest eloquence with sighs is mixed, Or stop the headlong fury of his speed.
Which to her oratary adds more grace. I know repentant tears ensue the deed,
She puts the period often from his place, Reproach, disdain, and deadly enmity;
And midst the sentence so her accent breaks, Yet strive I to embrace mine infamy.”
That twice she doth begin ere once she speaks. This said, he shakes aloft his Roman blade, She conjures him by high almighty Jove, Which like a faulcon towering in the skies,
By knighthood, gentry, and sweet friendship's oath, Coucheth the fowl below with his wings' sbade, By her untimely tears, her husband's love, Whose crooked beak threats if he mount he dies : By holy human law, and common troth, So under the insulting falchion lies
By Heaven and Earth, and all the power of both, Harmless Lucretia, marking what he tells,
That to his borrow'd bed he make retire, With trembling fear, as fowl hear faulcons' bells. And stoop to honour, not to foul desire.
* How will thy shame be seeded in thine age, “ So let thy thoughts, low vassals to thy state" | When thus thy vices bud before thy spring? “ No more," quoth he, “by Heaven I will not hear If in thy hope thou dar'st do such outrage, Yield to my love; if not, enforced hate, [thee: What dar'st thou not when once thou art a king ? Instead of love's coy touch, shall rudely tear thee; O be remember'd, no outrageous thing
That done, despitefully I mean to bear thee From vassal actors can be wip'd away;
Unto the base bed of some rascal groom,
To be thy partner in this shameful doom."
When most unseen, then most doth tyrannize. If bat for fear of this, thy will remove;
The wolf hath seiz'd his prey, the poor lamb cries, For princes are the glass, the school, the book, Till with her own white fleece her voice controllid Where subjects' eyes do learn, do read, do look. Entombs her outcry in her lips' sweet fold : * And wilt thou be the school where lust shall learn? Must be in thee read lectures of such shame? He pens her piteous clamours in ber head; Wilt thou be glass, wherein it shall discern
Cooling his hot face in the chastest tears Authority for sin, warrant for blame,
That ever modest eyes with sorrow shed. To privilege disbonour in thy name?
O, that prone lust should stain so pure a bed! Thou back'st reproach against long-living laud, The spots whereof could weeping parify, And mak'st fair reputation but a bawd.
Her tears should drop on them perpetually. « Hast thon command ? by him that gave it thee, But she hath lost a dearer thing than life, From a pure heart command thy rebel will: And he hath won what he would lose again. Draw not thy sword to guard iniquity,
This forced league doth force a further strife, For it was lent thee all that brood to kill.
This momentary joy breeds months of pain,
This bot desire converts to cold disdain:
Look as the full-fed hound or gorged hawk,
Unapt for tender smell or speedy flight,
His taste delicious, in digestion souring,
O deeper sin thap bottomless conceit
To thee, to thee, my hear'd-up hands appeal,
And then with lank and lean discolour'd cheek,
" Thou art," quoth she, “ a sea, a sovereign king;
So fares it with this faultful lord of Rome,
So shall these slaves be king, and thou their slave;
She says, her subjects with foul insurrection
Even in his thought, through the dark night he “ Where now I have no one to blush with me,
Seasoning the earth with showers of silver brine, She bears the load of lust he left behind,
Mingling my talk with tears, my grief with groans, And he the burthen of a guilty mind.
Poor wasting monuments of lasting moans. He, like a theevish dog, creeps sadly thence,
“O Night, thou furnace of foul-reeking smoke, She like a wearied lamb lies panting there;
Let not the jealous day behold that face He scouls, and hates himself for his offence, Which underneath thy black all-biding cloke She desperate, with her nails ber flesh doth tear; Immodestly lies martyr'd with disgrace! He faintly flies, sweating with guilty fear;
Keep still possession of thy gloomy place, She stays exclaiming on the direful night,
That all the faults which in thy reign are made, He runs, and chides his vanish'd, loath'd, deligbt. May likewise be sepùlcher'd in thy shade! He thence departs a heavy convertite,
“ Make me not object to the tell-tale day! She there remains a hopeless cast-away:
The light will show, charàcter'd in my brow,
The impious breach of holy wedlock's vow :
To 'cipher what is writ in learned books, To cloke offences with a cunning brow.
Will quote my loathsome trespass in my looks. “ They think not but that every eye can see “ The nurse, to still her child, will tell my story, The same disgrace which they themselves behold; | And fright her crying babe with Tarquin's name; And therefore would they still in darkness be, The orator, to deck his oratory, To have their unseen sin remain untold ;
Will couple my reproach to Tarquin's shame: For they their guilt with weeping will unfold, Feast-finding minstrels, tuning my defame, Aud grave, like water that doth eat in steel, Will tie the hearers to attend eaeh line, Upon my cheeks what helpless shame I feel.” How Tarquin wronged me, I Collatine. Here she exclaims against repose and rest,
“ Let my good name, that senseless reputation, And bids her eyes hereafter still be blind.
For Collatine's dear love be kept unspotted : She wakes her heart by beating on her breast, If that be made a theme for disputation, And bids it leap from thence, where it may find The branches of another root are rotted, Some purer chest, to close so pure a mind.
And undeserv'd reproach to him allotted, Frantic with grief thus breathes she forth her spite That is as clear from this attaint of mine, Against the unseen secresy of night.
As I, ere this, was pure to Collatine.
“ O comfort-killing Night, image of Hell !
“ O unseen shame! invisible disgrace!
“ O hateful, vaporous and foggy Night,
“ If, Collatine, thine honour lay in me,
“ With rotten damps ravish the morning air;
* Were Tarquin night, (as he is but night's child)
“ Why should the worm intrude the maiden bud ?