The Shepheardes Calender: September

September: Ægloga Nona. Hobbinol & Diggon Dauie.

Hobbinol.
Diggon Dauie, I bidde her god day:
Or Diggon her is, or I missaye.

Diggon.
Her was her, while it was daye light,
But nowe her is a most wretched wight.
For day, that was, is wightly past,
And now at earst the dirke night doth hast.

Hobbinoll.
Diggon areede, who has thee so dight?
Neuer I wist thee in so poor a plight.
Where is the fayre flocke, thou was wont to leade?
Or bene they chaffred? or at mischiefe dead?

Diggon.
Ah for loue of that, is to thee moste leefe,
Hobbinol, I pray thee gall not my old griefe:
Sike question ripeth vp cause of newe woe,
For one opened mote vnfolde many moe.

Hobbinoll.
Nay, but sorrow close shrouded in hart
I know, to kepe, is a burdenous smart.
Eche thing imparted is more eath to beare:
When the rayne is faln, the cloudes wexen cleare.
And nowe sithence I sawe thy head last,
Thrise three Moones bene fully spent and past:
Since when thou hast measured much grownd,
And wandred I wene about the world rounde,
So as thou can many thinges relate:
But tell me first of thy flocks astate.

Diggon.
My sheepe bene wasted, (wae is me therefore)
The iolly shepheard that was of yore,
Is nowe nor iolloye, nor shepehearde more.
In forrein costes, men sayd, was plentye:
And so there is, but all of miserye.
I dempt there much to haue eeked my store,
But such eeking hath made my hart sore.
In tho countryes, whereas I haue bene,
No being for those, that truely mene,
But for such, as of guile maken gayne,
No such countrye, as there to remaine.
They setten to sale their shops of shame,
And maken a Mart of theyr good name.
The shepheards there robben one another,
And layen baytes to beguile her brother.
Or they will buy his sheepe out of the cote,
Or they will caruen the shepheards throte.
The shepheards swayne you cannot wel ken,
But it be by his pryde, from other men:
They looken bigge as Bulls, that bene bate,
And bearen the cragge so stiffe and so state,
As cocke on his dunghill, crowing cranck.

Hobbinoll.
Diggon, I am so stiffe, and so stanck,
That vneth may I stand any more:
And nowe the Westerne wind bloweth sore,
That nowe is in his chiefe souereigntee,
Beating the withered leafe from the tree.
Sitte we downe here under the hill:
Tho may we talke, and tellen our fill,
And make a mocke at the blustring blast.
Now say on Diggon, what euer thou hast.

Diggon.
Hobbin, ah hobbin, I curse the stounde,
That euer I cast to haue lorne this grounde.
Wel-away the while I was so fonde,
To leaue the good, that I had in honde,
In hope of better, that was vncouth:
So lost the Dogge the flesh in his mouth.
My seely sheepe (ah seely sheepe)
That here by there I whilome vsed to keepe,
All were they lustye, as thou didst see,
Bene all sterued with pyne and penuree.
Hardly my selfe escaped thilke payne,
Driuen for neede to come home agayne.

Hobbinoll.
Ah fon, now by thy losse art taught,
That seeldome chaunge the better brought.
Content who liues with tryed state,
Neede feare no chaunge of frowning fate:
But who will seeke for vnknowne gayne,
Oft liues by losse, and leaues with payne.

Diggon.
I wote ne Hobbin how I was bewitcht
With vayne desyre, and hope to be enricht.
But sicker so it is, as the bright starre
Seemeth ay greater, when it is farre:
I thought the soyle would haue made me rich:
But nowe I wote, it is nothing sich.
For eyther the shepeheards bene ydle and still,
And ledde of theyr sheepe, what way they wyll:
Or they bene false, and full of couetise,
And casten to compasse many wrong emprise.
But the more bene fraught with fraud and spight,
Ne in good nor goodnes taken delight:
But kindle coales of conteck and yre,
Wherewith they sette all the world on fire:
Which when they thinken agayne to quench
With holy water, they doen hem all drench.
They saye they con to heauen the high way,
But by my soule I dare vndersaye,
Thye neuer sette foote in that same troade,
But balk the right way, and strayen abroad.
They boast they han the deuill at commaund:
But aske hem therefore, what they han paund.
Marrie that great Pan bought with deare borrow,
To quite it from the blacke bowre of sorrowe.
But they han sold thilk same long agoe:
For thy woulden drawe with hem many moe.
But let hem gange alone a Gods name:
As they han brewed, so let hem beare blame.
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Edmund Spenser

Edmund Spenser was an English poet best known for The Faerie Queene, an epic poem and fantastical allegory celebrating the Tudor dynasty and Elizabeth I. more…

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"The Shepheardes Calender: September" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2019. Web. 6 Dec. 2019. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/9305/the-shepheardes-calender:-september>.

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