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CICERONIS AMOR: THE SHEPHERD'S ODE, by                     Poet's Biography
First Line: Walking in a valley green
Last Line: And go contented to their sheep.
Subject(s): Odes (as Poetic Form); Shepherds & Shepherdesses

WALKING in a valley green,
Spread with Flora, summer-queen,
Where she heaping all her graces,
Niggard seem'd in other places;
Spring it was, and here did spring
All that nature forth can bring.
Groves of pleasant trees there grow,
Which fruit and shadow could bestow:
Thick-leav'd boughs small birds cover,
Till sweet notes themselves discover;
Tunes for number seem'd confounded,
Whilst their mixtures music sounded,
'Greeing well, yet not agreed
That one the other should exceed.
A sweet stream here silent glides,
Whose clear water no fish hides;
Slow it runs, which well bewray'd
The pleasant shore the current stay'd.
In this stream a rock was planted,
Where no art nor nature wanted.
Each thing so did other grace,
As all places may give place;
Only this the place of pleasure,
Where is heapèd nature's treasure.
Here mine eyes with wonder stay'd;
Eyes amaz'd, and mind afraid,
Ravish'd with what was beheld,
From departing were withheld.
Musing then with sound advice
On this earthly paradise;
Sitting by the river-side,
Lovely Phillis was descried.
Gold her hair, bright her eyne,
Like to Phœbus in his shine;
White her brow, her face was fair;
Amber breath perfum'd the air;
Rose and lily both did seek
To show their glories on her cheek;
Love did nestle in her looks,
Baiting there his sharpest hooks.
Such a Phillis ne'er was seen,
More beautiful than Love's Queen:
Doubt it was, whose greater grace,
Phillis' beauty, or the place.
Her coat was of scarlet red,
All in plaits; a mantle spread,
Fring'd with gold; a wreath of boughs
To check the sun from her brows;
In her hand a shepherd's hook,
In her face Diana's look.
Her sheep grazèd on the plains:
She had stolen from the swains;
Under a cool silent shade,
By the streams, she garlands made:
Thus sat Phillis all alone.
Miss'd she was by Coridon,
Chiefest swain of all the rest;
Lovely Phillis lik'd him best.
His face was like Phœbus' love;
His neck white as Venus' dove;
A ruddy cheek, fill'd with smiles,
Such Love hath when he beguiles;
His locks brown, his eyes were grey,
Like Titan in a summer-day:
A russet jacket, sleeves red;
A blue bonnet on his head;
A cloak of grey fenc'd the rain;
Thus 'tirèd was this lovely swain;
A shepherd's hook, his dog tied;
Bag and bottle by his side:
Such was Paris, shepherds say,
When with Œnone he did play.
From his flock stray'd Coridon,
Spying Phillis all alone;
By the stream he Phillis spied,
Braver than was Flora's pride.
Down the valley 'gan he track,
Stole behind his true-love's back;
The sun shone, and shadow made,
Phillis rose, and was afraid;
When she saw her lover there,
Smile she did, and left her fear.
Cupid, that disdain doth loath,
With desire strake them both.
The swain did woo; she was nice,
Following fashion, nay'd him twice:
Much ado he kiss'd her then;
Maidens blush when they kiss men;
So did Phillis at that stowre;
Her face was like the rose-flower.
Last they 'greed, for love would so,
Faith and troth, they would no mo;
For shepherds ever held it sin,
To false the love they livèd in.
The swain gave a girdle red;
She set garlands on his head:
Gifts were given; they kiss again;
Both did smile, for both were fain.
Thus was love 'mongst shepherds sold
When fancy knew not what was gold:
They woo'd, and vow'd, and that they keep,
And go contented to their sheep.

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