Verse > Anthologies > T. R. Smith, ed. > Poetica Erotica: A Collection of Rare and Curious Amatory Verse
T. R. Smith, comp.  Poetica Erotica: Rare and Curious Amatory Verse.  1921–22.
“Celemene, Pray Tell Me”
(From Pills to Purge Melancholy [1719], with music; set by Mr. Henry Purcell, sung by a Boy and Girl at the Playhouse)

He.  Celemene, pray tell me,
  Pray, pray tell me, Celemene,
  When those pretty, pretty, pretty Eyes I see,
  Why my Heart beats, beats, beats, beats in my Breast,
  Why, why it will not, it will not, why, why, it will not let me rest:        5
  Why this trembling, why this trembling too all o’er?
  Pains I never, pains I never, never, never felt before:
  And when thus I touch, when thus I touch your hand,
  Why I wish, I wish, I wish, I was a Man?
She.  How should I know more than you?        10
  Yet would be a Woman too.
  When you wash your self and play,
  I methinks could look all day;
  Nay, just now, nay, just now am pleased, am pleased so well,
  Should you, should you kiss me, I won’t tell,        15
  Should you, should you kiss me, I won’t tell.
  No, no I won’t tell, no, no I won’t tell, no, no I won’t tell.
  Should you kiss me I won’t tell.
He.  Tho’ I could do that all day,
  And desire no better play:        20
  Sure, sure in Love there’s something more,
  Which makes Mamma so big, so big before.
She.  Once by chance I heard it named,
  Don’t ask what, don’t ask what, for I’m ashamed:
  Stay but till you’re past Fifteen,        25
  Then you’ll know, then, then you’ll know what ’tis I mean,
  Then you’ll know what, then you’ll know what ’tis I mean.
He.  However, lose not present bliss,
  But now we’re alone, let’s kiss:
  But now we’re alone let’s kiss, let’s kiss.        30
She.  My breasts do so heave, so heave, so heave,
He.  My Heart does so pant, pant, pant;
She.  There’s Something, something, something more we want,
  There’s Something, something, something more we want.

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