Page images
PDF
EPUB

With leaden legs and batty wings doth creep:
Then crush this herb into Lysander's eye;
Whose liquor hath this virtuous property,
To take from thence all error with his might,
And make his eyeballs roll with wonted sight.
When they next wake, all this derision
Shall seem a dream and fruitless vision;
And back to Athens shall the lovers wend,
With league whose date till death shall never end.
Whiles I in this affair do thee employ,
I'll to my queen, and beg her Indian boy ;
And then I will her charméd eye release
From monster's view, and all things shall be peace
Puck. My fairy lord, this must be done with

haste,
For night's swift dragons cut the clouds full fast,
And yonder shines Aurora's harbinger,
At whose approach, ghosts, wandering here and

there, Troop home to churchyards ; damnéd spirits all, That in crossways and floods have burial, Already to their wormy beds are gone; For fear lest day should look their shames upon, They wilfully themselves exile from light And must for aye consort with black-browed night.

Obe. But we are spirits of another sort.

I with the morning's love have oft made sport;
And, like a forester, the groves may tread,
Even till the eastern gate, all fiery-red,
Opening on Neptune with fair blesséd beams,
Turns into yellow gold his salt green streams.
But, notwithstanding, haste; make no delay :
We may effect this business yet ere day. [Eært
Puck. Up and down, up and down,

I will lead them up and down :
I am feared in field and town;

Goblin, lead them up and down.
Here comes one.

Re-enter LYSANDER

Lys. Where art thou, proud Demetrius ? speak

thou now.
Puck. Here, villain ! drawn and ready.

Where art thou ?
Lys. I will be with thee straight.
Puck.

Follow me then To plainer ground.

[Exit LYSANDER, as following the voice.

Re-enter DEMETRIUS

Dem.

Lysander, speak again. Thou runaway, thou coward, art thou fled ?

Speak! In some bush? Where dost thou hide

thy head? Puck. Thou coward, art thou bragging to the

stars, Telling the bushes that thou look’st for wars, And wilt not come? Come, recreant; come, thou

child;

Lys. He

I'll whip thee with a rod. He is defiled,
That draws a sword on thee
Dem.

Yea; art thou there? Puck. Follow

my voice: we'll try no manhood here.

(Exeunt. Re-enter LYSANDER goes before

me,

and still dares me on; When I come where he calls, then he is gone. The villain is much lighter-heeled than I : I followed fast, but faster he did fly, That fallen am I in dark uneven way, And here will rest me. [Lies down.] Come, thou

gentle day! For if but once thou show me thy grey light, I'll find Demetrius, and revenge this spite. [Sleeps.

Re-enter Puck and DEMETRIUS Puck. Ho, ho, ho, hol Coward, why com’st

thou not?

Dem. Abide me, if thou dar'st; for well I wot, Thou runn'st before me, shifting every place, And dar'st not stand, nor look me in the face. Where art thou now? Puck.

Come hither : I am here. Dem. Nay, then, thou mock’st me. Thou shalt

buy this dear,
If ever [ thy face by day-light see:
Now, go thy way. Faihtness constraineth me
To measure out my length on this cold bed.
By day's approach look to be visited.

[Lies down and sleeps.

Re-enter HELENA

Hel. O weary night, O long and tedious night,

Abate thy hours : shine, comforts, from the east, That I may back to Athens, by day-light, From these that my poor company

detest. And sleep that sometimes shuts up

sorrow's eye, Steal me awhile from mine own company.

[Sleeps Puck. Yet but three ? Come one more ; Two of both kinds make

up

four.
Here she comes, curst and sad.
Cupid is a knavish lad,
Thus to make

poor

females mad.

Re-enter HERMIA
Her. Never so weary, never so in woe,

Bedabbled with the dew, and torn with briers : I can no further crawl, no further go :

My legs can keep no pace with my desires. Here will I rest me till the break of day. Heaven shield Lysander if they mean a fray !

[Lies down. Puck. On the ground

Sleep sound:
I'll apply
To

your eye,
Gentle lover, remedy.

[Squeezing the juice on LYSANDER's eye
When thou wak'st,
Thou tak'st
True delight

In the sight
Of thy former lady's eye:
And the country proverb known,
That every man should take his own,
In your waking shall be shown:

Jack shall have Jill;

Nought shall go ill;
The man shall have his mare again,

And all shall be well. [Exit PUCK

[blocks in formation]
« PreviousContinue »