Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE SHEPHERD'S PIPE: SECOND ECLOGUE, by WILLIAM BROWNE (1591-1643)



Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

Rhyming Dictionary Search
THE SHEPHERD'S PIPE: SECOND ECLOGUE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Two shepherds here complain the wrong
Last Line: And clouds distil in rain.
Alternate Author Name(s): Browne, William Of Tavistock
Subject(s): Shephers And Shepherdesses; Anger


THE ARGUMENT.

TWO shepherds here complain the wrong
Done by a swinish lout,
That brings his hogs their sheep among,
And spoils the plains throughout.

WILLIE. JOCKIF.

Willie.

JOCKIE, say: what might he be
That sits on yonder hill?
And tooteth out his notes of glee
So uncouth and so shrill?

Jockie.

Notes of glee? bad ones I trow:
I have not heard beforn
One so mistook as Willie now:
'Tis some sow-gelder's horn.
And well thou asken might'st if I
Do know him, or from whence
He comes, that to his minstrelsy
Requires such patience.
He is a swinward, but I think
No swinward of the best.
For much he reketh of his swink,
And carketh for his rest.

Willie.

Harm take the swine! What makes he here?
What luckless planet's frowns
Have drawn him and his hogs in feere
To root our daisied downs?
Ill mote he thrive! and may his hogs,
And all that e'er they breed,
Be ever worried by our dogs
For so presumptuous deed.
Why kept he not among the fens,
Or in the copses by,
Or in the woods and braky glens,
Where haws and acorns lie?
About the ditches of the town
Or hedgerows he might bring them.

Jockie.

But then some pence 'twould cost the clown
To yoke and eke to ring them;
And well I ween he loves no cost
But what is for his back:
To go full gay him pleaseth most,
And lets his belly lack.
Two suits he hath, the one of blue,
The other home-spun grey:
And yet he means to make a new
Against next revel day;
And though our May-lord at the feast
Seem'd very trimly clad,
In cloth by his own mother dress'd,
Yet comes not near this lad.
His bonnet neatly on his head,
With button on the top,
His shoes with strings of leather red,
And stocking to his slop.
And yet for all it comes to pass,
He not our gibing 'scapes:
Some like him to a trimmed ass,
And some to Jackanapes.

Willie.

It seemeth then, by what is said,
That Jockie knows the boor;
I would my scrip and hook have laid
Thou knew'st him not before.

Jockie.

Sike loathed chance by fortune fell
(If fortune ought can do):
Not kend him? Yes, I ken him well,
And sometime paid for't too.

Willie.

Would Jockie ever stoop so low,
As conissance to take
Of sike a churl? Full well I know,
No nymph of spring or lake,
No herdess, nor no shepherd's girl,
But fain would sit by thee,
And sea-nymphs offer shells of pearl
For thy sweet melody.
The satyrs bring thee from the woods
The strawberry for hire,
And all the first fruits of the buds
To woo thee to their quire.
Silvanus' songsters learn thy strain,
For by a neighbour spring
The nightingale records again
What thou dost primely sing.
Nor canst thou tune a madrigal,
Or any dreary moan,
But nymphs, or swains, or birds, or all
Permit thee not alone.
And yet (as though devoid of these)
Canst thou so low decline,
As leave the lovely naiades
For one that keepeth swine?
But how befell it?

Jockie.

T' other day,
As to the field I set me,
Near to the Maypole on the way
This sluggish swinward met me.
And seeing Weptol with him there,
Our fellow-swain and friend,
I bade good day, so on did fare
To my proposed end.
But as back from my wint'ring ground
I came the way before,
This rude groom all alone I found
Stand by the ale-house door.
There was no nay, but I must in
And taste a cup of ale;
Where on his pot he did begin
To stammer out a tale.
He told me how he much desir'd
Th' acquaintance of us swains,
And from the forest was retir'd
To graze upon our plains:
But for what cause I cannot tell,
He can nor pipe nor sing,
Nor knows he how to dig a well,
Nor neatly dress a spring:
Nor knows a trap nor snare to till,
He sits as in a dream;
Nor scarce hath so much whistling skill
Will hearten-on a team.
Well, we so long together were,
I'gan to haste away;
He licens'd me to leave him there,
And gave me leave to pay.

Willie.

Done like a swinward! may you all
That close with such as he,
Be used so! that gladly fall
Into like company.
But if I fail not in mine art,
I'll send him to his yard,
And make him from our plains depart
With all his dirty herd.
I wonder he hath suffer'd been
Upon our common here;
His hogs do root our younger trees,
And spoil the smelling breer.
Our purest wells they wallow in,
All overspread with dirt,
Nor will they from our arbours lin,
But all our pleasures hurt.
Our curious benches that we build
Beneath a shady tree,
Shall be o'erthrown, or so defil'd
As we would loath to see.
Then join we, Jockie; for the rest
Of all our fellow-swains,
I am assur'd, will do their best
To rid him fro our plains.

Jockie.

What is in me shall never fail
To forward such a deed.
And sure, I think, we might prevail
By some satiric reed.

Willie.

If that will do, I know a lad
Can hit the master-vein.
But let us home, the skies are sad,
And clouds distil in rain.





Other Poems of Interest...



Home: PoetryExplorer.net