THE FAITHFUL SHEPHERDESS
A monologue from Act I, Scene i
by: John Fletcher
|NOTE: The first quarto of The Faithful Shepherdess was probably issued about 1609-10. It is now a public domain work and may be performed without royalties.
- SATYR: [With a basket of fruit.] Through yon same bending plain,
- That flings his arms down to the main,
- And through these thick woods have I run,
- Whose bottom never kissed the sun
- Since the lusty spring began;
- All to please my master Pan,
- Have I trotted without rest
- To get him fruit, for at a feast
- He entertains this coming night
- His paramour, the Syrinx bright.--
- But behold, a fairer sight! [He stands amazed.]
- By that heavenly form of thine,
- Brightest fair, thou art divine,
- Sprong  from great immortal race
- Of the gods; for in they face
- Shines more awful majesty
- Than dull weak mortality
- Dare with misty eyes behold,
- And live. Therefore on this mold
- Lowly to I bend my knee
- In worship of thy deity.
- Deign it, goddess, from my hand
- To receive whate'er this land
- From her fertile womb doth send
- Of her choice fruits, and but lend belief to that the satyr tells:
- Fairer by the famous wells
- To this present day ne'er grew,
- Never better nor more true.
- Here be grapes, whose lusty blood
- Is the learned poets' good,
- Sweeter yet did never crown
- The head of Bacchus; nuts more brown
- Than the squirrel's teeth that crack them.
- Deign, O fairest fair, to take them!
- For these black-eyed Dryope
- Hath oftentimes commanded me
- With my claspéd knee to climb--
- See how well the lusty time
- Hath decked their rising cheeks in red,
- Such as on your lips is spread!
- Here be berries for a queen--
- Some be red, some be green;
- These are of that luscious meat
- The great god Pan himself doth eat;
- All these, and what the woods can yield,
- The hanging mountain, or the field,
- I freely offer, and ere long
- Will bring you more, more sweet and strong,
- Till when, humbly leave I take,
- Lest the great Pan do awake,
- That sleeping lies in a deep glade
- Under a broad beech's shade.
- I must go, I must run
- Swifter than the fiery sun.