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Philip Sidney
1554 -1586


Sleep baby mine
Loving in truth, and fain in verse my love to show,
Leave me, O Love, which reachest but to dust
Stella oft sees the very face of wo
Muses, I oft inuoked your holy ayde

Sleep baby mine, Desire, nurse Beauty singeth,
Thy cries, O baby, set my head on aching;
The baby cries, "Way, thy love doth keep me waking"

Lully, lully, my babe, hope cradle bringeth
Unto my children always good rest taking;
The baby cries, "Way, thy love doth keep me waking"

Since baby mine, from me thy watching springeth,
Sleep then a little, pap content is making:
The baby cries, "Nay, for that abide I waking"


ASTROPHEL AND STELLA: I

1 Loving in truth, and fain in verse my love to show,
2 That she, dear she, might take some pleasure of my pain,--
3 Pleasure might cause her read, reading might make her know,
4 Knowledge might pity win, and pity grace obtain,--
5 I sought fit words to paint the blackest face of woe;
6 Studying inventions fine her wits to entertain,
7 Oft turning others' leaves, to see if thence would flow
8 Some fresh and fruitful showers upon my sunburn'd brain.
9 But words came halting forth, wanting invention's stay;
10 Invention, Nature's child, fled step-dame Study's blows;
11 And others' feet still seem'd but strangers in my way.
12 Thus great with child to speak and helpless in my throes,
13 Biting my truant pen, beating myself for spite,
14 "Fool," said my Muse to me, "look in thy heart, and write."


1 Leave me, O Love, which reachest but to dust;
2 And thou, my mind, aspire to higher things;
3 Grow rich in that which never taketh rust;
4 Whatever fades but fading pleasure brings.
5 Draw in thy beams and humble all thy might
6 To that sweet yoke where lasting freedoms be;
7 Which breaks the clouds and opens forth the light,
8 That both doth shine and give us sight to see.
9 O take fast hold; let that light be thy guide
10 In this small course which birth draws out to death,
11 And think how evil becometh him to slide,
12 Who seeketh heav'n, and comes of heav'nly breath.
13 Then farewell, world; thy uttermost I see:
14 Eternal Love, maintain thy life in me.


XLV

Stella oft sees the very face of wo
Painted in my beclowded stormie face,
But cannot skill to pitie my disgrace,
Not though thereof the cause herself she know:
Yet, hearing late a fable which did show
Of louers neuer knowne, a grieuous case,
Pitie thereof gate in her breast such place,
That, from that sea deriu'd, teares spring did flow.
Alas, if Fancie, drawne by imag'd things
Though false, yet with free scope, more grace doth breed
Than seruants wracke, where new doubts honour brings;
Then thinke, my deare, that you in me do reed
Of louers ruine some thrise-sad tragedie.
I am not I: pitie the tale of me.


LV

Muses, I oft inuoked your holy ayde,
With choisest flowers my speech t' engarland so,
That it, despisde, in true but naked shew
Might winne some grace in your sweet grace arraid;
And oft whole troupes of saddest words I staid,
Striuing abroad a-foraging to go,
Vntill by your inspiring I might know
How their blacke banner might be best displaid.
But now I meane no more your helpe to try,
Nor other sugring of my speech to proue,
But on her name incessantly to cry;
For let me but name her whom I doe loue,
So sweet sounds straight mine eare and heart do hit,
That I well finde no eloquence like it.


2000 Elena and Yacov Feldman