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1 On Hellespont guilty of true love s blood

1 On Hellespont guilty of true love's blood
2 In view and opposite two cities stood
3 Sea borderers disjoin'd by Neptune's might;
4 The one Abydos the other Sestos hight.
5 At Sestos Hero dwelt; Hero the fair
6 Whom young Apollo courted for her hair
7 And offer'd as a dower his burning throne
8 Where she could sit for men to gaze upon.
9 The outside of her garments were of lawn
10 The lining purple silk with gilt stars drawn;
11 Her wide sleeves green and border'd with a grove
12 Where Venus in her naked glory strove
13 To please the careless and disdainful eyes
14 Of proud Adonis that before her lies;
15 Her kirtle blue whereon was many a stain
16 Made with the blood of wretched lovers slain.
17 Upon her head she ware a myrtle wreath
18 From whence her veil reach'd to the ground beneath;
19 Her veil was artificial flowers and leaves
20 Whose workmanship both man and beast deceives;
21 Many would praise the sweet smell as she past
22 When 'twas the odour which her breath forth cast;
23 And there for honey bees have sought in vain
24 And beat from thence have lighted there again.
25 About her neck hung chains of pebble stone
26 Which lighten'd by her neck like diamonds shone.
27 She ware no gloves; for neither sun nor wind
28 Would burn or parch her hands but to her mind
29 Or warm or cool them for they took delight
30 To play upon those hands they were so white.
31 Buskins of shells all silver'd used she
32 And branch'd with blushing coral to the knee;
33 Where sparrows perch'd of hollow pearl and gold
34 Such as the world would wonder to behold
35 Those with sweet water oft her handmaid fills
36 Which as she went would chirrup through the bills.
37 Some say for her the fairest Cupid pin'd
38 And looking in her face was strooken blind.
39 But this is true; so like was one the other
40 As he imagin'd Hero was his mother;
41 And oftentimes into her bosom flew
42 About her naked neck his bare arms threw
43 And laid his childish head upon her breast
44 And with still panting rock'd there took his rest.
45 So lovely fair was Hero Venus' nun
46 As Nature wept thinking she was undone
47 Because she took more from her than she left
48 And of such wondrous beauty her bereft
49 Therefore in sign her treasure suffer'd wrack
50 Since Hero's time hath half the world been black.


51 Amorous Leander beautiful and young
52 Whose tragedy divine Musus sung
53 Dwelt at Abydos; since him dwelt there none
54 For whom succeeding times make greater moan.
55 His dangling tresses that were never shorn
56 Had they been cut and unto Colchos borne
57 Would have allur'd the vent'rous youth of Greece
58 To hazard more than for the golden fleece.
59 Fair Cynthia wish'd his arms might be her sphere;
60 Grief makes her pale because she moves not there.
61 His body was as straight as Circe's wand;
62 Jove might have sipt out nectar from his hand.
63 Even as delicious meat is to the taste
64 So was his neck in touching and surpast
65 The white of Pelops' shoulder I could tell ye
66 How smooth his breast was and how white his belly;
67 And whose immortal fingers did imprint
68 That heavenly path with many a curious dint
69 That runs along his back; but my rude pen
70 Can hardly blazon forth the loves of men
71 Much less of powerful gods let it suffice
72 That my slack Muse sings of Leander's eyes;
73 Those orient cheeks and lips exceeding his
74 That leapt into the water for a kiss
75 Of his own shadow and despising many
76 Died ere he could enjoy the love of any.
77 Had wild Hippolytus Leander seen
78 Enamour'd of his beauty had he been.
79 His presence made the rudest peasant melt
80 That in the vast uplandish country dwelt;
81 The barbarous Thracian soldier mov'd with nought
82 Was mov'd with him and for his favour sought.
83 Some swore he was a maid in man's attire
84 For in his looks were all that men desire
85 A pleasant smiling cheek a speaking eye
86 A brow for love to banquet royally;
87 And such as knew he was a man would say
88 "Leander thou art made for amorous play;
89 Why art thou not in love and lov'd of all?
90 Though thou be fair yet be not thine own thrall."

91 The men of wealthy Sestos every year
92 For his sake whom their goddess held so dear
93 Rose cheek'd Adonis kept a solemn feast.
94 Thither resorted many a wandering guest
95 To meet their loves; such as had none at all
96 Came lovers home from this great festival;
97 For every street like to a firmament
98 Glister'd with breathing stars who where they went
99 Frighted the melancholy earth which deem'd
100 Eternal heaven to burn for so it seem'd
101 As if another Pha{"e}ton had got
102 The guidance of the sun's rich chariot.
103 But far above the loveliest Hero shin'd
104 And stole away th' enchanted gazer's mind;
105 For like sea nymphs' inveigling harmony
106 So was her beauty to the standers by;
107 Nor that night wandering pale and watery star
108 When yawning dragons draw her thirling car
109 From Latmus' mount up to the gloomy sky
110 Where crown'd with blazing light and majesty
111 She proudly sits more over rules the flood
112 Than she the hearts of those that near her stood.
113 Even as when gaudy nymphs pursue the chase
114 Wretched Ixion's shaggy footed race
115 Incens'd with savage heat gallop amain
116 From steep pine bearing mountains to the plain
117 So ran the people forth to gaze upon her
118 And all that view'd her were enamour'd on her.
119 And as in fury of a dreadful fight
120 Their fellows being slain or put to flight
121 Poor soldiers stand with fear of death dead strooken
122 So at her presence all surpris'd and tooken
123 Await the sentence of her scornful eyes;
124 He whom she favours lives; the other dies.
125 There might you see one sigh another rage
126 And some their violent passions to assuage
127 Compile sharp satires; but alas too late
128 For faithful love will never turn to hate.
129 And many seeing great princes were denied
130 Pin'd as they went and thinking on her died.
131 On this feast day O cursed day and hour!
132 Went Hero thorough Sestos from her tower
133 To Venus' temple where unhappily
134 As after chanc'd they did each other spy.
135 So fair a church as this had Venus none
136 The walls were of discolour'd jasper stone
137 Wherein was Proteus carved; and over head
138 A lively vine of green sea agate spread
139 Where by one hand light headed Bacchus hung
140 And with the other wine from grapes out wrung.
141 Of crystal shining fair the pavement was;
142 The town of Sestos call'd it Venus' glass
143 There might you see the gods in sundry shapes
144 Committing heady riots incest rapes
145 For know that underneath this radiant flower
146 Was Danae's statue in a brazen tower
147 Jove slyly stealing from his sister's bed
148 To dally with Idalian Ganimed
149 And for his love Europa bellowing loud
150 And tumbling with the rainbow in a cloud;
151 Blood quaffing Mars heaving the iron net
152 Which limping Vulcan and his Cyclops set;
153 Love kindling fire to burn such towns as Troy
154 Sylvanus weeping for the lovely boy
155 That now is turn'd into a cypress tree
156 Under whose shade the wood gods love to be.
157 And in the midst a silver altar stood
158 There Hero sacrificing turtles' blood
159 Vail'd to the ground veiling her eyelids close;
160 And modestly they opened as she rose.
161 Thence flew Love's arrow with the golden head;
162 And thus Leander was enamoured.
163 Stone still he stood and evermore he gazed
164 Till with the fire that from his count'nance blazed
165 Relenting Hero's gentle heart was strook
166 Such force and virtue hath an amorous look.

167 It lies not in our power to love or hate
168 For will in us is over rul'd by fate.
169 When two are stript long ere the course begin
170 We wish that one should lose the other win;
171 And one especially do we affect
172 Of two gold ingots like in each respect
173 The reason no man knows let it suffice
174 What we behold is censur'd by our eyes.
175 Where both deliberate the love is slight
176 Who ever lov'd that lov'd not at first sight?.

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by:- admin posted in:- christopher morley

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