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You Gote-heard Gods

Sir Philip Sidney 1554 (Penshurst, Kent) – 1586 (Zutphen)

Strephon.

You Gote-heard Gods, that loue the grassie mountaines,
You Nimphes that haunt the springs in pleasant vallies,
You Satyrs ioyde with free and quiet forests,
Vouchsafe your silent eares to playning musique,
Which to my woes giues still an early morning;
And drawes the dolor on till wery euening.

Klaius.

O Mercurie, foregoer to the euening,
O heauenlie huntresse of the sauage mountaines,
O louelie starre, entitled of the morning,
While that my voice doth fill these wofull vallies,
Vouchsafe your silent eares to plaining musique,
Which oft hath Echo tir'd in secrete forrests.

Strephon.

I that was once free-burges of the forrests,
Where shade from Sunne, and sports I sought at euening,
I that was once esteem'd for pleasant musique,
Am banisht now among the monstrous mountaines
Of huge despaire, and foule afflictions vallies,
Am growne a shrich-owle to my selfe each morning.

Klaius.

I that was once delighted euery morning,
Hunting the wilde inhabiters of forrests,
I that was once the musique of these vallies,
So darkened am, that all my day is euening,
Hart-broken so, that molehilles seeme high mountaines,
And fill the vales with cries in steed of musique.

Strephon.

Long since alas, my deadly Swannish musique
Hath made it selfe a crier of the morning,
And hath with wailing strength clim'd highest mountaines:
Long since my thoughts more desert be then forrests:
Long since I see my ioyes come to their euening,
And state throwen downe to ouer-troden vallies.

Klaius.

Long since the happie dwellers of these vallies,
Haue praide me leaue my strange exclaiming musique,
Which troubles their dayes worke, and ioyes of euening:
Long since I hate the night, more hate the morning:
Long since my thoughts chase me like beasts in forrests,
And make me wish my selfe layd vnder mountaines.

Strephon.

Me seemes I see the high and stately mountaines,
Transforme themselues to lowe deiected vallies:
Me seemes I heare in these ill changed forrests,
The Nightingales doo learne of Owles their musique:
Me seemes I feele the comfort of the morning
Turnde to the mortall serene of an euening.

Klaius.

Me seemes I see a filthie clowdie euening,
As soon as Sunne begins to clime the mountaines:
Me seemes I feele a noysome sent, the morning
When I doo smell the flowers of these vallies:
Me seemes I heare, when I doo heare sweete musique,
The dreadfull cries of murdred men in forrests.

Strephon.

I wish to fire the trees of all these forrests;
I giue the Sunne a last farewell each euening;
I curse the fidling finders out of Musicke:
With enuie I doo hate the loftie mountaines;
And with despite despise the humble vallies:
I doo detest night, euening, day, and morning.

Klaius.

Curse to my selfe my prayer is, the morning:
My fire is more, then can be made with forrests;
My state more base, then are the basest vallies:
I wish no euenings more to see, each euening;
Shamed I hate my selfe in sight of mountaines,
And stoppe mine eares, lest I growe mad with Musicke.

Strephon.

For she, whose parts maintainde a perfect musique,
Whose beautie shin'de more then the blushing morning,
Who much did passe in state the stately mountaines,
In straightnes past the Cedars of the forrests,
Hath cast me wretch into eternall euening,
By taking her two Sunnes from these darke vallies.

Klaius.

For she, to whom compar'd, the Alpes are vallies,
She, whose lest word brings from the spheares their musique,
At whose approach the Sunne rose in the euening,
Who, where she went, bare in her forhead morning,
Is gone, is gone from these our spoyled forrests,
Turning to desarts our best pastur'de mountaines.

Strephon. Klaius.

These mountaines witnesse shall, so shall these vallies,
These forrests eke, made wretched by our musique,
Our morning hymne is this, and song at euening.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

3:15 min read
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Sir Philip Sidney

Sir Philip Sidney was an English poet, courtier, scholar and soldier who is remembered as one of the most prominent figures of the Elizabethan age. more…

All Sir Philip Sidney poems | Sir Philip Sidney Books

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