Clo. Shepherd, how cam’st thou hither to this place?
No way is trodden; all the verdant grass
The spring shot up stands yet unbruisèed here
Of any foot; only the dappled deer,
Far from the fearèed sound of crookèed horn,
Dwells in this fastness.

The. Chaster than the morn,
I have not wandered, or by strong illusion
Into this virtuous place have made intrusion:
But hither am I come (believe me, fair),
To seek you out, of whose great good the air
Is full, and strongly labours, whilst the sound
Breaks against heaven, and drives into a stound
Th’amazèed shepherd, that such virtue can
Be resident in lesser than a man.

Clo. If any art I have, or hidden skill,
May cure thee of disease of festered ill
Whose grief or greenness to another’s eye
May seem unpossible of remedy,
I dare yet undertake it.

The. ’Tis no pain
I suffer through disease, no beating vein
Conveys infection dangerous to the heart,
No part imposthumed, to be cured by art,
This body holds; and yet a fuller grief
Than ever skilful hand did give relief
Dwells on my soul, and may be healed by you,
Fair, beauteous virgin.

Clo. Then, shepherd, let me sue
To know thy grief: that man yet never knew
The way to health that durst not show his sore.

The. Then, fairest, know, I love you.

Clo. Swain, no more!
Thou hast abused the strictness of this place,
And offered sacrilegious foul disgrace
To the sweet rest of these interrèed bones;
For fear of whose ascending, fly at once,
Thou and thy idle passions, that the sight
Of death and speedy vengeance may not fright
Thy very soul with horror.

The. Let me not,
Thou all perfection, merit such a blot
For my true zealous faith.

Clo. Dar’st thou abide
To see this holy earth at once divide,
And give her body up? for sure it will,
If thou pursu’st with wanton flames to fill
This hallowed place: therefore repent and go,
Whilst I with prayers appease his ghost below,
That else would tell thee what it were to be
A rival in that virtuous love that he
Embraces yet.

The. ’Tis not the white or red
Inhabits in your cheek that thus can wed
My mind to adoration; nor your eye,
Though it be full and fair, your forehead high
And smooth as Pelops’ shoulder; not the smile
Lies watching in those dimples to beguile
The easy soul; your hands and fingers long,
With veins enamelled richly; nor your tongue,
Though it spoke sweeter than Arion’s harp;
Your hair woven into many a curious warp,
Able in endless error to enfold
The wandering soul; not the true perfect mould
Of all your body, which as pure doth show
In maiden-whiteness as the Alpen-snow:
All these, were but your constancy away,
Would please me less than a black stormy day
The wretched seaman toiling through the deep.
But, whilst this honoured strictness you dare keep,
Though all the plagues that e’er begotten were
In the great womb of air were settled here,
In opposition, I would, like the tree,
Shake off those drops of weakness, and be free
Even in the arm of danger.

Clo. Wouldst thou have
Me raise again, fond man, from silent grave
Those sparks, that long ago were buried here
With my dear friend’s cold ashes?

The. Dearest dear,
I dare not ask it, nor you must not grant:
Stand strongly to your vow, and do not faint.
Remember how he loved you, and be still
The same opinion speaks you: let not will,
And that great god of women, appetite,
Set up your blood again; do not invite
Desire and fancy from their long exile,
To seat them once more in a pleasing smile:
Be, like a rock, made firmly up ’gainst all
The power of angry heaven, or the strong fall
Of Neptune’s battery. If you yield, I die
To all affection; ’tis that loyalty
You tie unto this grave I so admire:
And yet there’s something else I would desire,
If you would hear me, but withal deny.
Oh, Pan, what an uncertain destiny
Hangs over all my hopes! I will retire;
For, if I longer stay, this double fire
Will lick my life up.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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