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Harke to a Shepherdes wretched crie,
Vnto himselfe so great a foe,
As for thy sweetest sake to die,
He findes he doth it well be stowe:
Turne thy deafe eares vnto my smart,
And mollifie thy hard pretences,
And now begin to put thy hart
Into the handes of thy sweete sences.
Turne these two faire and cruell eies
Vnto this haplesse Shepherd Swaine:
Thy flocke regarde not, but his cries,
And thinke a little on his paine,
Let that but mooue and change thy will:
To thinke thereof, I pray thee deine yet,
And not to remedie mine ill,
But to behold how I susteine it.
How often hast thou come and leade
Vnto the field thy flocke and dams,
How many times vnto the meade
Hast thou brought forth thy pretie lambes?
That I told not my little ease,
That I became a foole for thee,
But better had I held my peace,
So little it auailed me.
That which I feele for thy sweete sake
With what wordes shall I now declare?
Or with what knowledge shall I make
My faith but knowen and heauie care?
What humane senses shall suffice
To feele that paine, and that vnrest,
Which for thy lake Loue did deuise
To giue me (though I tell it best.)
Why dost thou hide thy selfe from me,
Since thou dost knowe it very cleere,
That present when I am with thee,
Most absent from thee I appeere:
I, in suspences to enfolde me
Being where thy faire beauties are:
And thou, when that thou dost beholde me,
From seeing me then art thou far.
To shewe me likewise thou dost knowe
(To mocke me when thou dost pretend)
Things from thy thought, which euer goe,
See then who greater loue can giue,
Or greater grounded loue in hand,
That my deceiued thought must liue
With that thou makâ€™st it vnderstand.
Behold thâ€™extreme wherein I am,
Seeing my good in doubtfull state,
That silly creatures I became,
(Lesse then my selfe) to emulate:
For, for the bird the winde doth beare,
And fish that in the waues doe liue,
For their sweete freedome euery where
My vnderstanding I would giue.
A change of thousand times I see,
And nouels euery day doe raine:
Minds change from that they wont to bee,
Obliuions doe reuiue againe.
In euery thing there is great change,
The which I neuer saw in thee,
Whereby thou maist perceiue how strange,
And vaine my hope is vnto me.
The other day thou didst passe by,
Feeding thy fiocke vpon the hill:
For greefe I sighed somewhat high;
Meaning thereby to thee no ill:
A lambe the head then lift vp, that it
Did heare, and did some pitie feele,
And thou didst fling thy sheepe hooke at it:
See what a hardned hart of steele.
Couldâ€™st thou not (armed with such power)
After such long time killing me
Helpe me a day or but an hower?
If that doth seeme too much to thee,
Doe it to see how I may proue
Or how with fauours, that ensue,
In better sort intreate this loue:
Then after kill my soule anew.
I doe desire to change estate
From paine to paine, and not to pleasure:
Nor yet to change from loue to hate,
And all in one degree and measure.
And though the ill in substance should
Be but all one and of one sort:
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