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The Freers of Seincte Augustyne next
Appeared to the syghte,
272 Ynne diffraunt partes a godlie psaumie
Moste sweetlie theye dydd chaunt;
“Sweet Florence! nowe I praie forbere,
Ynn quiet lett mee die;
Maye looke onne dethe as I.
Theye washe my soule awaie,
Wyth thee, sweete dame, to staie. “'Tys butt a journie I shalle goe
Untoe the lande of blysse;
232 Thenne Florence, fault'ring ynne her saie,
Tremblynge these wordyes spoke, “Ah, cruele Edwarde! bloudie kynge !
Mye herte ys welle nyghe broke:
Wythoute thye lovynge wyfe?
Ytte eke shall ende mye lyfe.”
To brynge Syr Charles awaie, Whoe turnedd toe hys lovynge wyse, And thus to her dydd saie:
244 "I goe to lyfe, and nott to dethe;
Truste thou ynne Godde above,
248 “Teache them to runne the nobile race
Thatt I theyre fader runne;
Thenne fyve-and-twentye archers came;
Echone the bowe dydd bende,
280 Bolde as a lyon came Syr Charles,
Drawne onne a cloth-layde sledde,
Wyth plumes uponne theyre hedde: 284 Behynde hym five-and-twenty moe
Of archers stronge and stoute,
288 Seincte Jameses Freers marched next,
Echone hys 'parte dydd chaunt;
292 Thenne came the maior and eldermenne,
Ynne clothe of scarlett deck't;
296 And after them, a multitude
Of citizens dydd thronge;
300 And whenne hee came to the hyghe crosse,
Syr Charles dydd turne and saie, “O thou, thatt savest manne fromme synne,
Washe mye soule clean thys daie!” 304
Uponne a sledde hee mounted thenne,
Wythe lookes full brave and swete; Lookes thatt enshone ne more concern
Thanne anie ynne the strete.
Att the grete mynster wyndowe sat
The kynge ynne myckle state,
To hys most welcom fate.
Thatt Edwarde hee myghte heare,
312 “Thou seest me, Edwarde! traytour vile!
Expos'd to infamie;
I'm greaterr nowe thanne thee.
Thenne hee, wyth preestes, uponne hys knees,
A prayer to Godde dyd make, Beseechynge hym unto hymselfe
Hys partynge soule to take. Thenne, kneelynge downe, hee layd hys hedde
Most seemlie onne the blocke; Whyche fromme hys bodie fayre at once The able heddes-manne stroke:
372 And oute the bloude beganne to flowe,
And rounde the scaffolde twyne; And teares, enow to washe 't awaie,
Dydd flowe fromme each mann's eyne.
Ynnto foure partes cutte;
Uponne a pole was putte.
One onne the mynster-tower,
384 The other onne Seyncte Powle's goode gate,
A dreery spectacle;
Ynne hyghe-streete most nobile.
Godde prosper longe oure kynge,
“Bye foule proceedyngs, murdre, bloude,
Thou wearest nowe a crowne; And hast appoynted mee to die,
By power nott thyne owne.
I have beene dede 'till nowe,
324 “Whylst thou, perhapps, for som few yeares,
Shalt rule thys fickle lande,
'Twixt kynge and tyrant hande:
Shall falle onne thye owne hedde”.
Departed thenne the sledde.
Hee turn'd hys hedde awaie,
Hee thus dydd speke and saie:
Ne ghastlie terrors brynge,
Hee's greater thanne a kynge !"
"And maye echone oure foes Bende downe theyre neckes to bloudie axe
And feede the carryon crowes.” And nowe the horses gentlie drewe
Syr Charles uppe the hyghe hylle;
His pretious bloude to spylle.
As uppe a gilded carre
352 And to the people hee dyd saie,
“Beholde you see mee dye, For servynge loyally mye kynge,
Mye kynge most ryghtfullie.
Ne quiet you wylle knowe:
360 "You leave youre goode and lawfulle kynge,
Whenne ynne adversitye;
THE ACCOUNTE OF W. CANYNGES
GEORGE CRABBE (1754-1832)
FROM THE VILLAGE
BOOK I Fled are those times, when, in harmonious strains The rustic poet praised his native plains:
Beneath an ancient bridge the straitened flood
No shepherds now, in smooth alternate verse,
On Mincio's banks, in Cæsar's bounteous reign,
* No; cast by fortune on a frowning coast, 49 Which neither groves nor happy valleys boast; Where other cares than those the Muse relates, And other shepherds dwell with other mates; By such examples taught, I paint the cot, As Truth will paint it and as bards will not: Nor you, ye poor, of lettered scorn complain,
you the smoothest song is smooth in vain; O'ercome by labour, and bowed down by time, Feel you the barren flattery of a rhyme ? Can poets soothe you, when you pine for bread, By winding myrtles round your ruin'd shed ? — Can their light tales your weighty griefs o'er
power, Or glad with airy mirth the toilsome hour? Lo! where the heath, with withering brake grown
o'er, Lends the light turf that warms the neighbouring
poor; From thence a length of burning sand appears, Where the thin harvest waves its withered ears; Rank weeds, that every art and care defy, Reign o'er the land and rob the blighted rye: There thistles stretch their prickly arms afar, And to the ragged infant threaten war; 70 There poppies nodding, mock the hope of toil; There the blue bugloss paints the sterile soil; Hardy and high, above the slender sheaf, The slimy mallow waves her silky leaf; O'er the young shoot the charlock throws a shade, And clasping tares cling round the sickly blade; With mingled tints the rocky coasts abound, And a sad splendour vainly shines around.
Again, the country was enclosed, a wide And sandy road has banks on either side; Where, lo! a hollow on the left appeared, And there a gipsy tribe their tent had rcared; 'Twas open spread, to catch the morning sun, And they had now their early meal begun, When two brown boys just left their grassy
seat, The early traveller with their prayers to greet: While yet Orlando held his pence in hand, He saw their sister on her duty stand; 150 Some twelve years old, demure, affected, sly, Prepared the force of early powers to try; Sudden a look of languor he descries, And well-feigned apprehension in her eyes; Trained but yet savage, in her speaking face He marked the features of her vagrant race; When a light laugh and roguish leer expressed The vice implanted in her youthful breast: Forth from the tent her elder brother came, Who seemed offended, yet forbore to blame 160 The young designer, but could only trace The looks of pity in the traveller's face: Within, the father, who from fences nigh Had brought the fuel for the fire's supply, Watched now the feeble blaze, and stood dejected
by. On ragged rug, just borrowed from the bed, And by the hand of coarse indulgence fed, In dirty patchwork negligently dressed, Reclined the wife, an infant at her breast; In her wild face some touch of grace remained, Of vigour palsied and of beauty stained; 171 Her bloodshot eyes on her unheeding mate
Were wrathful turned, and seemed her wants to
state, Cursing his tardy aid — her mother there With gipsy-state engrossed the only chair; Solemn and dull her look; with such she stands, And reads the milk-maid's fortune in her hands, Tracing the lines of life; assumed through years, Each feature now the steady falsehood wears; With hard and savage eye she views the food, And grudging pinches their intruding brood; 181 Last in the group, the worn-out grandsire sits Neglected, lost, and living but by fits: Useless, despised, his worthless labours done, And half protected by the vicious son, Who half supports him; he with heavy glance Views the young ruffians who around him dance; And, by the sadness in his face, appears To trace the progress of their future years: 189 Through what strange course of misery, vice, deceit, Must wildly wander each unpractised cheat ! What shame and grief, what punishment and pain, Sport of fierce passions, must each child sustain – Ere they like him approach their latter end, Without a hope, a comfort, or a friend!
WILLIAM BLAKE (1757-1827)
SONGS OF INNOCENCE
And not sit both night and day,
In what distant deeps or skies
What the hammer? what the chain? In what furnace was thy brain ? What the anvil ? what dread grasp Dare its deadly terrors clasp?
A Robin Redbreast in a cage
When the stars threw down their spears,
Tiger, tiger, burning bright
He who shall hurt the little wren