End. Ah! Lycidas, come tell me why
Thy whilom merry oat
By thee doth so neglected lie,
And never purls a note?
I prithee speak. Lyc. I will. End. Say on.
Lyc. 'Tis thou, and only thou,
That art the cause, Endymion.
End. For love's sake, tell me how.
Lyc. In this regard: that thou do'st play
Upon another plain,
And for a rural roundelay
Strik'st now a courtly strain.
Thou leav'st our hills, our dales, our bowers,
Our finer fleeced sheep,
Unkind to us, to spend thine hours
Where shepherds should not keep.
I mean the court: Let Latmos be
My lov'd Endymion's court.
End. But I the courtly state would see.
Lyc. Then see it in report.
What has the court to do with swains,
Where Phyllis is not known?
Nor does it mind the rustic strains
Of us, or Corydon.
Break, if thou lov'st us, this delay.
End. Dear Lycidas, e're long
I vow, by Pan, to come away
And pipe unto thy song.
Then Jessamine, with Florabell,
And dainty Amaryllis,
With handsome-handed Drosomell
Shall prank thy hook with lilies.
Lyc. Then Tityrus, and Corydon,
And Thyrsis, they shall follow
With all the rest; while thou alone
Shalt lead like young Apollo.
And till thou com'st, thy Lycidas,
In every genial cup,
Shall write in spice: Endymion 'twas
That kept his piping up.
And, my most lucky swain, when I shall live to see
Endymion's moon to fill up full, remember me:
Meantime, let Lycidas have leave to pipe to thee.