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But sirst, and chiefest, with thee bring,
Him that yon soars on golden wing,
Guiding the siery-wheeled throne,
The Cherub Contemplation;

And the mute Silence hist along, cj

'Less Philomel will deign a song,
In her sweetest, saddest plight,
Smoothing the rugged brow of night,
While Cynthia checks her dragon yoke,
Gently o'er th' accustom'd oak; 60

Sweet bird that shunn'st the noise of folly,
Most musical, most melancholy!
Thee, chauntress, oft, the woods among,
I woo to hear thy even-song;

And misting thee, I walk unseen 65

On the dry smooth-shaven green,
To behold the wandering moon,
Riding near her highest noon,
Like one that had been led astray
Through the Heav'n's wide pathless way, 70

And oft, as if her head she bow'd,
Stooping through a fleecy cloud.
Oft on a plat of rising ground,
I hear the far-osf Curfeu sound,
Over some wide-water'd shore, 75

Swinging flow with sullen roar;
Or if the air will not permit,
Some still removed place will sit,
Where glowing embers through the room
Teach light to counterfeit a gloom, 80


Far from all resort of mirth,

Save the cricket on the hearth,

Or the belman's drousy charm,

To bless the doors from nightly harm:

Or let my lamp at midnight hour, 85

Be seen in some high lonely tower,

Where I may oft out-watch the Bear,

With thrice great Hermes, or unsphere

The spirit of Plato to unfold

What worlds, or what vast regions, hold 90

The immortal mind that hath forsook

Her mansion in this fleshly nook:

And of those Demons that are found

In sire, air, flood, or under ground,

Whose power hath a true consent 95

With planet, or with element.

Sometime let gorgeous tragedy

In scepter'd pall come sweeping by,

Presenting Thebes', or Pelops' line,

Or the tale of Troy divine, 100

Or what (though rare) of later age

Ennobled hath the buskin'd stage.

But, O fad Virgin, that thy power

Might raise Musæus from his bower,

Or bid the soul of Orpheus sing 10c

Such notes as, warbled to the string,

Drew iron tears down Pluto's cheek,

And made Hell grant what love did seek.

Or call up him that left half told

The story of Cambuscan bold, i i»


Of Camball, and of Algarsife,
And who had Canace to wife,
That own'd the virtuous ring and glass.
And of the wondrous horse of brass,
On which the Tartar king did ride; i 1 t

And if ought else great bards beside
In sage and solemn tunes have sung,
Of turneys and of trophies hung,
Of forests, and inchantments drear,
Where more is meant than meets the ear. 129

Thus night oft fee me in thy pale career,
Till civil-suited morn appear,
Not trickt and srounct as she was wont
With the Attic boy to hunt,

But kercheft in a comely cloud, U?

While rocking winds are piping loud,
Or usher'd with a shower still,
When the gust hath blown his fill,
Ending on the rufsling leaves,

With minute drops from off the eaves. 1 ;•

And when the sun begins to fling
His flaring beams, me, Goddess, bring
To arched walks of twilight groves,
And shadows brown that Sylvan loves
Of pine, or monumental oak, l»r

Where the rude ax with heaved stroke
Was never heard the Nymphs to daunt,
Or fright them from their hallow'd haunt.
There in close covert by some brook,
Where no profaner eye may look, '140

Hide me from day's garish eye,

While the bee with honied thigh,

That at her flowery work doth sing,

And the waters murmuring,

With such concert as they keep, 145

Entice the dewy-feather'd sleep;

And let some strange mysterious dream

Wave at his wings in aery stream

Of lively portraiture display'd,

Softly on my eye-lids laid. 150

And as I wake, sweet music breathe

Above, about, or underneath,

Sent by some Spirit to mortals good,

Or th' unseen Genius of the wood.

But let my due feet never fail irr

To walk the studious cloyster's pale,

And love the high embowed roof,

With antic pillars massy proof,

And storied windows richly dight,

Casting a dim religious light. 160

There let the pealing organ blow,

To the sull-voic'd quire below,

In service high, and anthems clear,

As may with sweetness, through mine ear,

Dissolve me into extasies, 1g

And bring all Heav'n before mine eyes.
And may at last my weary age
Find out the peacesul hermitage,
The hairy gown and mossy cell,
Where I may sit and rightly spell 170


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Of every star that Heav'n doth shew,

And every herb that sips the dew:

Till old experience do attain

To something like prophetic strain.

These pleasures, Melancholy, give, 175

And I with thee will choose to live.


Part of an Entertainment presented to the Countess Dowager of Derby at Haresield, by some noble persons of her family, who appear on the scene in pastoral habit, moving toward the seat of state, with this Song.


LOOK Nymphs, and Shepherds look,
What sudden blaze of majesty
Is that which we from hence descry,
Too divine to be mistook:

This, this is she r

To whom our vows and withes bend;
Here our solemn search hath end.

* This poem is only part of an Entertainment, or Mast, as it is also intitled in Milton's Manuscript, the rest probably being 0/ a different nature, or composed by a disferent hand.



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