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THE BLESSINGS OF A SHEPHERDS life. 167
THE BLESSINGS OF A SHEPHERD's life.
To carve out dials quaintly, point by point,
So many days my ewes have been with young;
So minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years,
To kings, that fear their subjects' treachery?
And to conclude,--the shepherd's homely curds,
When care, mistrust, and treason wait on him.
NO STABILITY IN A MOB.
Look, as I blow this feather from
A SIMILE ON AMBITIOUS THOUGHTS.
Why, then I do but dream on sovereignty; Like one that stands upon a promontory, And spies a far-off shore where he would tread, Wishing his foot were equal with his eye; And chides the sea that sunders him from thence, Saying-he'll lade it dry to have his way.
Why, love forswore me in my mother's womb: And, for I should not deal in her soft laws She did corrupt frail nature with some bribe To shrink mine arm up like a wither'd shrub; To make an envious mountain on my back, Where sits deformity to mock my body; To shape my legs of an unequal size; To disproportion me in every part, Like to a chaos, or an unlick'd bear-whelp, That carries no impression like the dam. And am I then a man to be belov'd?
Why, I can smile, and murder while I smile; And cry, content, to, that which grieves my heart; And wet my cheeks with artificial tears,
And frame my face to all occasions.
I'll drown more sailors than the mermaid shall;
HENRY VI. ON HIS OWN LENITY.
I have not stopp'd mine ears to their demands, Nor posted off their suits with slow delays; My pity hath been balm to heal their wounds, My mildness hath allay'd their swelling griefs, My mercy dry'd their water-flowing tears: I have not been desirous of their wealth, Nor much oppress'd them with great subsidies, Nor forward of revenge, though they much err'd.
DYING SPEECH OF THE EARL OF WARWICK.
Ah, who is nigh? come to me, friend, or foe, And tell me, who is victor, York, or Warwick? Why ask I that? my mangled body shows, My blood, my want of strength, my sick heart shows, That I must yield my body to the earth, And, by my fall, the conquest to my foe. Thus yields the cedar to the axe's edge, Whose arms gave shelter to the princely eagle, Under whose shade the ramping lion slept; a
Whose top-branch over-peer'd Jove's spreading tree,
And kept low shrubs from winter's powerful wind.
The wrinkles in my brows, now fill'd with blood,
QUEEN MARGARET'S SPEECH BEFORE THE BATTLE
Lords, knights, and gentlemen, what I should say, My tears gainsay*; for every word I speak, Ye see, I drink the water of mine eyes. [reign, Therefore, no more but this:-Henry, your soveIs prisoner to the foe; his state usurp'd, His realm a slaughter-house, his subjects slain, His statutes cancell'd, and his treasure spent; And yonder is the wolf, that makes this spoil. You fight in justice: then, in God's name, lords, Be valiant, and give signal to the fight.
OMENS ON THE BIRTH OF RICHARD III.
The owl shriek'd at thy birth, an evil sign; The night-crow cried, aboding luckless time; Dogs howl'd, and hideous tempests shook down The raven rook'dt her on the chimney's top, [trees: * Unsay, deny.
+ To rook, signified to squat down or lodge on any thing.
And chattering pies in dismal discords sung.
Not like the fruit of such a goodly tree.
Teeth hadst thou in thy head, when thou wast born, To signify, thou cam'st to bite the world.
KING RICHARD III.
THE DUKE OF GLOSTER ON HIS OWN DEFORMITY.
Now are our brows bound with victorious wreaths;
But I, that am not shap'd for sportive tricks,