Here pause, my Gothic lyre, a little while,
The leisure hour is all that thou canst claim.
But if ***** on this labour smile,
New strains erelong shall animate thy frame. 535 And his applause to me is more than fame;
For still with truth accords his taste refined.
At lucre or renown let others aim,
I only wish to please the gentle mind,
Whom Nature's charms inspire, and love of humankind. 540
THE dews of summer nighte did falle,
The moone (sweete regente of the skye)
Silver'd the walles of Cumnor Halle,
And manye an oake that grewe therebye.
Nowe noughte was hearde beneath the skies, 5
(The soundes of busye lyfe were stille,)
Save an unhappie ladie's sighes,
That issued from that lonelye pile.
'Leicester,' shee cried, 'is thys thy love
'That thou so oft has sworne to mee, 10 'To leave mee in thys lonelye grove,
'Immurr'd in shameful privitie?
'No more thou com'st with lover's speede,
'Thy once-beloved bryde to see;
'But bee shee alive, or bee shee deade, 15 'I feare (sterne earle's) the same to thee.
'Not so the usage I receiv'd,
'When happye in my father's halle;
'No faithlesse husbande then me griev'd,
'No chilling feares did mee appall. 20
Published in Evans Old Ballads, Volume IV, 1784. Text of first edition.