chapter  64
A PASTORAL To Mr. Stafford, Under the Name of SILVIO, ON HIS TRANSLATION OF THE Death of Camilla: OUT OF VIRGIL.
Thirsis and Amarillis.
Pages 5

Thirsis. Why Amarillis dost thou walk alone, And the gay pleasures of the Meadows shun? Why to the silent Groves dost thou retire, When uncompell’d by the Suns scorching fire? 5 Musing with folded Arms, and down-cast look, Or pensive yield to thy supporting Hook: Is Damon safe? and has his Vows betray’d, And born the Trophies to some other Maid? Amarillis. The Gods forbid I should survive to see 10 The fatal day he were unjust to me. Nor is my Courage, or my Love so poor T’out-live that Scorn’d, and miserable hour; Rather let Wolves my new yean’d Lambs devour. Wither ye Verdant Grass, dry up ye Streams, 15 And let all Nature turn to vast extreams: In Summer let the Boughs be cale and dry, And now gay Flowers the wandring Spring supply, But with my Damons Love, Let all that’s charming die. Thirsis. Why then this dull retreat, if he be true, 20 Or, Amarillis, is the change in you? 186You love some Swains more rich in Herds and Flocks, For none can be more powerful in his looks; His shape, his meen, his hair, his wondrous face, And on the Plaines, none dances with his Grace; 25 ’Tis true, in Piping he does less excell. Amarillis. The Musick of his Voice can Charm as well, When tun’d to words of Love, and sighs among, With the soft tremblings of his bashful tongue, And Thirsis, you accuse my Faith in vain, 30 To think it wavering, for another Swain; ’Tis admiration now that fills my soul, And does ev’n love suspend, if not controul. My thoughts are solemn all, and do appear With wonder in my Eyes, and not despair! 35 My heart is entertain’d with silent Joys, And I am pleas’d above the Mirth of Noise. Thirsis. What new-born pleasure can divert you so, Pray let me hear, that I may wonder too. Amarillis. Last night, by yonder purling stream I stood, 40 Pleas’d with the murmurs of the little Flood, Who in its rapid glidings bore away The fringing Flow’rs, that made the Bank so gay, Which I compar’d to fickle Swains, who invade First this, then that deceiv’d, and yielding Maid: 45 Whose flattering Vows an easie passage find, Then unregarded leave ’em far behind, To sigh their Ruin to the flying Wind. So the so[il’]d flow’rs their rifled Beauties hung, While the triumphant Ravisher passes on. 50 This while I sighing view’d, I heard a voice That made the Woods, the Groves, and Hills rejoyce. Who eccho’d back the charming sound again, Answering the Musick of each softning strain, And told the wonder over all the Plain. 55 Young Silvio ’twas that tun’d his happy Pipe, The best that ever grac’d a Shepherds Lip! 187 Silvio of Noble Race, yet not disdains To mix his harmony with Rustic Swains. To th’ humble Shades th’ Illustrious Youth resorts, 60 Shunning the false delights of gaudy Courts, For the more solid happiness of Rural sports. Courts which his Noble Father long pursu’d, And serv’d till he out-serv’d their gratitude. Thirsis. Oh Amarillis, let that tale no more 65 Remembred be on the Arcadian Shore, Lest Mirth should on our Meads no more be found, But Stafford’s Story should throughout resound, And fill with pitying cryes the Echoes all around. Amarillis. Arcadia keep your peace, but give me leave, 70 Who knew the Heroes Loyalty, to grieve; Once Thirsis, by th’ Arcadian Kings Commands, I left these Shades, to visit forein Lands; Imploy’d in public toils of State Affairs, Unusual with my Sex, or to my Years; 75 There ’twas my chance, so Fortune did ordain, To see this great, this good, this God-like Man: Brave, Pious, Loyal, Just, without constraint, The soul all Angell, and the Man a Saint; His temper’d mind no Passion e’er inflam’d, 80 But when his King and Countrey were profan’d; Then oft I’ve seen his generous blood o’er spread His awful face, with a resenting Red, In Anger quit the Room, and would disdain To herd with the Rebellious Publican. 85 But Thirsis ’twould a worship’d Volume fill, If I the Heroes wondrous Life should tell; His Vertues were his Crime, like God he bow’d A necessary Victim to the frantick Croud; So a tal[l] sheltring Oak that long had stood, 90 The mid-days shade, and glory of the Wood; Whose aged boughs a reverence did command, Fell lop’d at last by an Ignoble hand: And all his branches are in pieces torn, That Victors grac’d, and did the Wood adorn. 18895 —With him young Silvio, who compos’d his Joys, The darling of his Soul and of his Eyes, Inheriting the Vertues of his Sire, But all his own is his Poetic fire; When young, the Gods of Love, and Wit did grace 100 The pointed, promis’d Beautys of his face, Which ripening years did to perfection bring, And taught him how to Love, and how to Sing. Thirsis. But what dear Amarillis, was the Theam The Noble Silvio Sung by yonder Stream? Amarillis. 105 Not of the Shepherds, nor their Rural Loves, The Song was Glorious tho ’twas sung in Groves! Camilla’s Death the skilful Youth inspir’d, As if th’ Heroic Maid his Soul had fir’d; Such life was in his Song, such heat, such flight, 110 As he had seen the Royal Virgin fight. He made her deal her wounds with Graceful Art, With vigorous Air fling the unfailing Dart, And form’d her Courage to his own great heart. Never was fighting in our Sex a Charm, 115 Till Silvio did the bright Camilla Arm; With Noble Modesty he shews us how To be at once Hero, and Woman too. Oh Conquering Maid! how much thy Fame has won, In the Arcadian Language to be sung, 120 And by a Swain so soft, so sweet, so young. Thirsis. Well hast thou spoke the noble Silvio’s Praise, For I have often heard his charming lays; Oft has he blest the Shades with strains Divine, Took many a Virgins heart, and Ravish’d mine. 125 Long may he sing in every Field and Grove, And teach the Swains to Pipe, the Maids to Love. Amarillis. 189 Daphnis, and Colin Pipe not half so well, E’en Dions mighty self he does excell; As the last Lover of the Muses, blest, 130 The last and young in Love are always best; And She her darling Lover does requite With all the softest Arts of Noblest Wit. Thirsis. Oh may he dedicate his Youth to her! Thus let ’em live, and love upon the square, 135 But see Alexis homeward leads his Flock, And brouzing Goats descend from yonder Rock; The Sun is hasting on to Thetis Bed, See his faint Beams have streak’d the Sky with Red. Let’s home e’er night approach, and all the way, 140 You shall of Silvio sing, while I will play.