Verse > Anthologies > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of English Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. 1919. The Oxford Book of English Verse: 1250–1900.
Anonymous. 16th Cent. (Scottish)
50. When Flora had O'erfret the Firth
QUHEN Flora had o'erfret the firth 
  In May of every moneth queen; 
Quhen merle and mavis singis with mirth 
  Sweet melling in the shawis sheen; 
  Quhen all luvaris rejoicit bene         5
And most desirous of their prey, 
  I heard a lusty luvar mene 
—'I luve, but I dare nocht assay!' 
'Strong are the pains I daily prove, 
  But yet with patience I sustene,  10
I am so fetterit with the luve 
  Only of my lady sheen, 
  Quhilk for her beauty micht be queen, 
Nature so craftily alway 
  Has done depaint that sweet serene:  15
—Quhom I luve I dare nocht assay. 
'She is so bricht of hyd and hue, 
  I luve but her alone, I ween; 
Is none her luve that may eschew, 
  That blinkis of that dulce amene;  20
  So comely cleir are her twa een 
That she mae luvaris dois affray 
  Than ever of Greece did fair Helene: 
—Quhom I luve I dare nocht assay!' 
GLOSS:  o'erfret] adorned.  shawis] woods.  sheen] beautiful.  mene] mourn.  hyd] skin.  blinkis] gets a glimpse.  dulce amene] gentle and pleasant one.  mae] more.
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