Castara Victrix

(i) Scene: a bare hollow between hills. Enter Castara and her Esquire. C.
What was it we should strike the road again?E.
There was a wood of dwarf and soured oaks
Crept all along a hill upon our left,
A wonder in the country, and a landmark
They said we could not miss. A pushing brook
Ran through it, following which we should have sight
Of mile-long reaches of our road below us.
My thought was, there to rest against the trees
And watch until our horses and the men
Circled the safe flanks of the bulky hills.C.
And how long was the way?E.
This shorter way?
Two miles indeed.C.
We have come four, do you think?
Somewhere we slipt astray, you cannot doubt.E.
True, madam. I am sorry now to see
I better'd all our path with sanguine eyes.

*****(ii) At the picnic or whatever we call it. Daphnis, Castara .D. — Can I do any harm?C.If you are silent, that I know of, none.D.Ill meant, yet true. I best should flatter then,In copying well what you have well begun.C.In copying? how?D.Must I give tongue again?In copying your sweet silence.C.Am I soGuilty of silence?D.Quite, as ladies go.Yet what you are, the world would say, remain:It never yet so sweetly was put onBy any lauded statue, nor againBy speech so sweetly broken up and gone.C.What if I hated flattery?D.Say you do:The hatred comes with a good grace from you:Flattery's all out of place where praise is true.

*****(iii) Valerian, Daphnis .V.

Come, Daphnis.D.
Good Valerian, I will come. (exit V .
Why should I go because Castara goes?
I do not, but to please Valerian.
But why then should Castara weigh with me?
Why, there's an interest and sweet soul in beauty
Which makes us eye-attentive to the eye
That has it; and she is fairer than Colomb,
Selvaggia, Orinda, and Adela, and the rest.
Fairer? These are the flaring shows unlovely
That make my eyes sore and cross-colour things
With fickle spots of sadness; accessories
Familiar and so hated by the sick;
Hated and too familiar to — — — ;
These are my very text of discontent;
These names, these faces? They are customary
And kindred to my lamentable days,
Of which I say there is no joy in them.
To these Castara is rain or breeze or spring,
— — — — — — dew, is dawn, is day,
Sheet lightning to the stifling lid of night
Bright-lifting with a little-lasting smile
And breath on it. That is, her face is this.
And if it is why there is cause enough
To say I go because Castara goes.
Yet I'd not say it is her face alone
That this is true of: 'tis Castara's self;
But this distemper'd court will change it all: —
Which says at least then go while all is fresh, —
Much cause to go because Castara goes.
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