Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, DORIS; A PASTORAL, by ARTHUR JOSEPH MUNBY

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

DORIS; A PASTORAL, by                     Poet's Biography
First Line: I sat with doris, the shepherd maiden
Last Line: No more a servant, nor yet a child.
Variant Title(s): A Pastoral
Subject(s): Courtship

I SAT with Doris, the shepherd-maiden;
Her crook was laden with wreathed flowers:
I sat and wooed her, through sunlight wheeling
And shadows stealing, for hours and hours.
And she, my Doris, whose lap encloses
Wild summer-roses of sweet peerfume,
The while I sued her, kept hushed and hearkened,
Till shades had darkened from gloss to gloom.
She touched my shoulder with fearful finger;
She said, "We linger, we must not stay:
My flock's in danger, my sheep will wander;
Behold them yonder, how far they stray!"
I answered bolder, "Nay, let me hear you,
And still be near you, and still adore!
No wolf nor stranger will touch one yearling:
Ah! stay my darling, a moment more!"
She whispered, sighing, "There will be sorrow
Beyond to-morrow, if I lose to-day:
My fold unguarded, my flock unfolded,
I shall be scolded and sent away."
Said I, denying, "If they do miss you,
They ought to kiss you when you get home;
And well rewarded by friend and neighbor
Should be the labor from which you come."
"They might remember," she answered meekly,
"That lambs are weakly, and sheep are wild;
But if they love me, it's none so fervent:
I am a servant, and not a child,:
Then each hot ember glowed within me,
And love did win me to swift reply:
"Ah! do but prove me; and none shall bind you,
Nor fray nor find you, until I die."
She blushed and started, and stood awaiting,
As if debating in dreams divine;
But I did brave them; I told her plainly
She doubted vainly, she must be mine.
So we twin-hearted, from all the valley
Did rouse and rally her nibbling ewes;
And homeward drave them, we two together,
Through blooming heather and gleaming dews.
That simple duty fresh grace did lend her,
My Doris tender, my Doris true;
That I, her warder, did always bless her,
And often press her to take her due.
And now in beauty she fills my dwelling,
With love excelling, and undefiled;
And love doth guard her, both fast and fervent,
No more a servant, nor yet a child.

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