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What was that snaky-headed Gorgon shield
Oft seen in charnel vaults and sepulchres
How charming is divine philosophy ! 16
List, list! I hear Some far-off balloo break the silent air.
Methought so too; what should it be ?
Either some one like us night-foundered here,
Heaven keep my sister! Again, again, and near; Best draw and stand upon our guard.
[The ATTENDANT SPIRIT habited like a Shepherd.]
That halloo I should know ; what are you? Speak ! Come not too near; you fall on iron stakes else.
What voice is that? My young lord ? Speak again.
Thyrsis ? whose artful strains 17 have oft delayed The huddling brook to hear his madrigal, And sweetened every musk-rose of the dale. How cam’st thou here, good swain ? Hath any ram Slipped from the fold, or young kid lost his dam, Or straggling wether the pent flock forsook ? How couldst thou find this dark sequestered nook ?
O my loved master's heir, and his next joy! I came not here on such a trivial toy As a strayed ewe, or to pursue the stealth Of pilfering wolf; not all the fleecy wealth That doth enrich these downs, is worth a thought To this my errand, and the care it brought. But oh, my virgin lady! where is she ? How chance she is not in your company ?
To tell thee sadly,18 shepherd, without blame,