Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

EGERTON MANUSCRIPT: 104. JOPAS'S SONG, by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: When dido feasted first the wandering trojan knight
Last Line: For they have their two poles directly t'one to t'other . . .'
Alternate Author Name(s): Wyat, Thomas
Subject(s): Goddesses & Gods; Mythology; Singing & Singers

When Dido feasted first the wand'ring Trojan knight
Whom Juno's wrath with storms did force in Libyc sands to light,
That mighty' Atlas did teach, the supper lasting long,
With crisped locks, on golden harp Iopas sang in his song.
'That same,' quod he, 'that we the world do call and name,
Of heaven and earth with all contents it is the very frame.
Or thus: of heavenly pow'rs, by more pow'r kept in one;
Repugnant kinds, in mids of whom the earth hath place alone,
Firm, round, of living things the mother, place, and nurse.
Without the which in equal weight this heaven doth hold his course,
And it is called by name the first moving heaven.
The firmament is next, containing other seven.
Of heavenly powers that same is planted full and thick
As shining lights which we call stars that therein cleave and stick.
With great swift sway the first and with his restless source
Carry'th itself and all those eight in even continual course.
And of this world so round within that rolling case
There be two points that never move but firmly keep their place:
The t'one we see alway; the t'other stands object
Against the same, dividing just the round by line direct
Which by'imagination drawn from t'one to t'other
Toucheth the centre of the earth; way there is no nother.
And these been called the poles, described by stars not bright,
Arctic the t'one northward we see, Antarctic t'other hight.
The line that we devise from t'one to t'other so
As axle is upon the which th'heavens about doth go;
Which of water nor earth, of air nor fire have kind;
Therefore the substance of those same were hard for man to find.
But they been uncorrupt, simple and pure, unmixed;
And so we say been all those stars that in those same been fixed;
And eke those erring seven in circles as they stray -
So called because against that first they have repugnant way
And smaller byways too, scant sensible to man -
Too busy work for my poor harp, let sing them he that can.
The widest, save the first, of all these nine above,
One hundred year doth ask of space for one degree to move;
Of which degrees we make, in the first moving heaven,
Three hundred and three score in parts justly divided even.
And yet there is another between those heavens two
Whose moving is so sly, so slack, I name it not for now.
The seventh heaven, or the shell next to the starry sky,
All those degrees that gather'th up with aged pace so sly
And doth perform the same, as elders' count hath been,
In nine and twenty years complete and days almost sixteen,
Doth carry in his bowt the star of Saturn old,
A threat'ner of all living things with drought and with his cold.
The sixth whom this contains doth stalk with younger pace
And in twelve year doth somewhat more than t'other's voyage was.
And this in it doth bear the star of Jove benign,
'Tween Saturn's malice and us men friendly defending sign.
The fifth bear'th bloody Mars that in three hundred days
And twice elev'n with one full year hath finished all those ways.
A year doth ask the fourth, and hours thereto six,
And in the same the day his eye, the Sun, therein he sticks.
The third, that governed is by that that govern'th me
And love for love and for no love provokes as oft we see,
In like space doth perform that course that did the t'other.
So doth the next to the same that second is in order,
But it doth bear the star that called is Mercury
That many's crafty secret step doth tread as calcars try.
That sky, is last and first next us, those ways hath gone
In seven and twenty common days and eke the third of one
And beareth with his away the diverse Moon about,
Now bright, now brown, now bent, now full, and now her light is out.
Thus have they of their own two movings all those seven:
One wherein they be carried still each in his sev'ral heaven,
Another of himselves where their bodies been led
In byways and in lesser rounds, as I afore have said;
Save, of them all, the Sun doth stray least from the straight,
The starry sky hath but one course, that we have called the eight.
And all these movings eight are meant from west to th'east
Although they seem to climb aloft, I say, from east to west;
But that is but by force of the first moving sky
In twice twelve hours from east to th'east that carry'th them by and by.
But mark we well also these movings of these seven
Be not about that axletree of the first moving heaven;
For they have their two poles directly t'one to t'other . . .'

Discover our Poem Explanations and Poet Analyses!

Other Poems of Interest...

Home: PoetryExplorer.net