Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, AMORET IN MASQUERADE, by CHARLES COTTON



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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

AMORET IN MASQUERADE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Bless me! Wonder how I'm struck
Last Line: You shall always wear the breeches.
Subject(s): Masquerades


BLESS me! wonder how I'm struck
With that youth's victorious look!
So much lustre, so much grace,
Never broke from human face;
Fond Narcissus was an ass,
Cynthia's love a moon-calf was,
Ganymede, that bears Jove's bowl,
Was a chit, Paris an owl,
And Adonis, with th' fine Miss,
Was a puppy-dog to this.
Women, now lay by your charms,
Here is one hath other arms,
And of greater power too,
Than your magazines can shew:
All your beauties, all your arts,
Conqu'ring or deceiving hearts,
You may spare and let alone,
We shall henceforth be by none
Conquer'd, but this peerless one.
Yet I have a lover been,
Sev'ral beauties I have seen,
Nor in love am yet so rude,
But I've often been subdu'd;
Nor so old but that again,
Once more struck I might have been,
By some glances, or some features
Of those little female creatures,
Had I but escap'd this night,
Seeing of this charming sight:
But now having seen those eyes,
I all female force despise;
Yet my flame I can't approve,
'Tis but a prodigious love,
And there can be little joy
In thus doting on a boy,
Who, although he love again,
Never can reward my pain:
Yet methinks it cannot be,
There is in 't some mystery,
Nature sure would ne'er so use me,
Nor instinct so much abuse me,
As my reason thus to blind,
But there's something in the wind.
I have e'er a loather been
Of the foul Italian sin,
And yet know not where the bliss is
In a little stripling's kisses.
My heart tells me, to those eyes
There belongs a pair of thighs,
'Twixt whose iv'ry columns is
Th' Ebor folding door to bliss:
And this spring, all that we see
Strut with such formality,
Huff, and strive to look so big,
Is but Pallas in a wig;
And though his count'nance he doth set
To a good pitch of counterfeit,
Yet he cannot hide the while,
Venus' dimple in his smile;
Were the story not cold fled,
And the party long since dead,
I should swear a thousand oaths,
Helen 'twere in Paris' clothes;
But there I should wrong him yet,
Helen was not half so sweet,
For all Greeks and Trojans arming,
Nor is Venus half so charming.

Pretty Monsieur, I must pry
More into your symmetry;
Those fine fingers were not made
To be put to th' fighting trade,
And that pretty little arm,
Methinks threatens no great harm;
Waists, which thimbles will environ,
Are not to be shell'd with iron,
And those little martin-nests,
Which swell out upon your breasts,
With steel are not to be press'd,
But whereon for kings to rest;
Your soft belly, not unlike,
May sometimes feel push of pike,
But there will be balsam found
In the spear to heal the wound;
Nor those thighs yet, by their leaves,
Were, I take it, made for greaves;
Nor yet do you walk so wide,
As you us'd to ride astride,
But look your saddle, when you do,
Be well stuff'd and pummell'd too.
Next, those pretty legs and feet
Ne'er were spurr'd and booted yet,
I dare swear it. Come, tell truth,
Are you not a cloven youth?

See, he laughs, and has confess'd,
God-a-mercy for the jest:
Monsieur Amoret let me
Your Valet de Chambre be,
I will serve with humble duty
Both your valour and your beauty,
You shall all day Master hight,
But my Mistress, Sir, at night:
Which if you will please to grant
To your humble supplicant,
Since you wear your wig so featly,
And become your clothes so neatly,
He has sworn, who thus beseeches,
You shall always wear the breeches.





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