The sounds and seas, with all their finny drove, Now to the moon in wavering
morrice move ; And, on the tawny sands and shelves, Trip the pert fairies and the
dapper elves. By dimpled brook, and fountain brim, The wood-nymphs, decked
A Mask John Milton. r My best guide now : methought it was the sound. LADY.
This way the noise was, if mine ear he true, Can any mortal mixture of earth's
mould Breathe such divine. 15.
My best guide now : methought it was the sound Of riot and ill-managed
merriment, Such as the jocund flute, or gamesome pipe, Stirs up among the loose
unletter'd hinds, When, for their teeming flocks, and granges full, In wanton dance
Or, if our eyes 15e barred that happiness, might we but hear The folded flocks
penned in their wattled cotes, Or sound of pastoral reed with oaten stops, Or
whistle from the lodge, or village cock Count the night watches to his feathery
... Till an unusual stop of sudden silence Gave respite to the drowsy-flighted -2
steeds That draw the litter of close-curtained sleep ; At last a soft and solemn-
breathing sound 23 Rose like a steam of rich distilled perfumes, And stole upon
the air ...
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I much prefer John Kinsella's updated version 'A Dialogic Mask' which, rather engagingly, includes John Milton's original in a beautifully produced hardback. Comus is available from Arc Publications.