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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. The Book of Elizabethan Verse. 1907.

The Satyr’s Leave-taking

John Fletcher (1579–1625)

THOU divinest, fairest, brightest,

Thou most powerful maid, and whitest,

Thou most virtuous and most blessèd,

Eyes of stars, and golden-tressèd

Like Apollo! tell me, sweetest,

What new service now is meetest

For the Satyr? Shall I stray

In the middle air, and stay

The sailing rack, or nimbly take

Hold by the moon, and gently make

Suit to the pale queen of night

For a beam to give thee light?

Shall I dive into the sea,

And bring thee coral, making way

Through the rising waves that fall

In snowy fleeces? Dearest, shall

I catch thee wanton fawns, or flies

Whose woven wings the summer dyes

Of many colours? get thee fruit,

Or steal from Heaven old Orpheus’ lute?

All these I’ll venture for, and more,

To do her service all these woods adore.

Holy Virgin, I will dance

Round about these woods as quick

As the breaking light, and prick

Down the lawns and down the vales

Faster than the wind-mill sails.

So I take my leave, and pray

All the comforts of the day,

Such as Phœbus’ heat doth send

On the earth, may still befriend

Thee, and this arbour!