Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Parthenophil and Parthenophe
Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
Parthenophil and Parthenophe
Elegy XXI. Happy! depart with speed! Than me, more fortunate ever!
Barnabe Barnes (1569?–1609)
HAPPY! depart with speed! Than me, more fortunate ever!
  Poor Letter, go thy ways! unto my sweet Lady’s hands!
She shall look on thee! and then, with her beautiful eyes bless!
  Smiling eyes (perhaps, thee to delight with a glance)
She shall cast on a line; if a line, there, pleaseth her humour!        5
  But if a line displease; then shall appear a frown!
How much she dislikes thy loves, and saucy salutings!
  O my life’s sweet Light! know that a frown of thine eye
Can transpierce to my soul, more swift than a Parthian arrow;
  And more deeply wound than any lance, or a spear!        10
But thy sweet Smiles can procure such contrary motions;
  Which can, alone, that heal, wound afore by thine eyes!
Like to the lance’s rust, which healed whilom warlike ACHILLES
  With right hand valiant, doughtily wounded afore.
Not unlike to the men, whose grief the scorpion helpeth        15
  (Whom he, before, did sting), ready to die through pain:
Thou, that Beauty procures to be thy Chastity’s handmaid,
  With Virtue’s regiment glorious, ordered alone!
Thou, that those smooth brows, like plates of ivory planèd,
  (When any look on them) canst make appear like a cloud!        20
Thou, that those clear eyes, whose light surpasseth a star’s light,
  Canst make Love’s flames shoot, with cruel anger, abroad!
Thou, that those fair cheeks, when a man thy beauty beholdeth,
  (Deeply to wound), canst make sweetly to blush like a rose!
Make thy brows (to delight mine heart!) smooth! Shadow thy clear eyes!        25
  (Whose, smile is to my soul, like to the sun from a cloud,
When he shines to the world in most pride, after a tempest;
  And with his heat provokes all the delights of the ground)
Grant me, sweet Lady! this! This, grant! kind Pity requesteth!
  Tears and sighs make a suit! Pity me! pity my suit!        30
Thus to thy sweet graces, will I leave my dreary bewailings!
  And to thy gracious heart, I recommend my laments!
Thrice blessed! go thy way, to my Dear! Go, thrice speedy Letter!
  And for me, kiss them! since I may not kiss her hands.

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