Archives For Poetry


Cymbeline, ACT V, SCENE I. Britain. The Roman camp.

Enter POSTHUMUS, with a bloody handkerchief

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Yea, bloody cloth, I’ll keep thee, for I wish’d
Thou shouldst be colour’d thus. You married ones,
If each of you should take this course, how many
Must murder wives much better than themselves
For wrying but a little! O Pisanio!
Every good servant does not all commands:
No bond but to do just ones. Gods! if you
Should have ta’en vengeance on my faults, I never
Had lived to put on this: so had you saved
The noble Imogen to repent, and struck
Me, wretch more worth your vengeance. But, alack,
You snatch some hence for little faults; that’s love,
To have them fall no more: you some permit
To second ills with ills, each elder worse,
And make them dread it, to the doers’ thrift.
But Imogen is your own: do your best wills,
And make me blest to obey! I am brought hither
Among the Italian gentry, and to fight
Against my lady’s kingdom: ’tis enough
That, Britain, I have kill’d thy mistress; peace!
I’ll give no wound to thee. Therefore, good heavens,
Hear patiently my purpose: I’ll disrobe me
Of these Italian weeds and suit myself
As does a Briton peasant: so I’ll fight
Against the part I come with; so I’ll die
For thee, O Imogen, even for whom my life
Is every breath a death; and thus, unknown,
Pitied nor hated, to the face of peril
Myself I’ll dedicate. Let me make men know
More valour in me than my habits show.
Gods, put the strength o’ the Leonati in me!
To shame the guise o’ the world, I will begin
The fashion, less without and more within.

Exit

SCENE II. Field of battle between the British and Roman camps.

Enter, from one side, LUCIUS, IACHIMO, and the Roman Army: from the other side, the British Army; POSTHUMUS LEONATUS following, like a poor soldier. They march over and go out. Then enter again, in skirmish, IACHIMO and POSTHUMUS LEONATUS he vanquisheth and disarmeth IACHIMO, and then leaves him
IACHIMO
The heaviness and guilt within my bosom
Takes off my manhood: I have belied a lady,
The princess of this country, and the air on’t
Revengingly enfeebles me; or could this carl,
A very drudge of nature’s, have subdued me
In my profession? Knighthoods and honours, borne
As I wear mine, are titles but of scorn.
If that thy gentry, Britain, go before
This lout as he exceeds our lords, the odds
Is that we scarce are men and you are gods.

Exit

The battle continues; the Britons fly; CYMBELINE is taken: then enter, to his rescue, BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, and ARVIRAGUS

BELARIUS
Stand, stand! We have the advantage of the ground;
The lane is guarded: nothing routs us but
The villany of our fears.

GUIDERIUS ARVIRAGUS
Stand, stand, and fight!

Re-enter POSTHUMUS LEONATUS, and seconds the Britons: they rescue CYMBELINE, and exeunt. Then re-enter LUCIUS, and IACHIMO, with IMOGEN

CAIUS LUCIUS
Away, boy, from the troops, and save thyself;
For friends kill friends, and the disorder’s such
As war were hoodwink’d.

IACHIMO
‘Tis their fresh supplies.

CAIUS LUCIUS
It is a day turn’d strangely: or betimes
Let’s reinforce, or fly.

Exeunt

SCENE III. Another part of the field.

Enter POSTHUMUS LEONATUS and a British Lord
Lord
Camest thou from where they made the stand?

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
I did.
Though you, it seems, come from the fliers.

Lord
I did.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
No blame be to you, sir; for all was lost,
But that the heavens fought: the king himself
Of his wings destitute, the army broken,
And but the backs of Britons seen, all flying
Through a straight lane; the enemy full-hearted,
Lolling the tongue with slaughtering, having work
More plentiful than tools to do’t, struck down
Some mortally, some slightly touch’d, some falling
Merely through fear; that the straight pass was damm’d
With dead men hurt behind, and cowards living
To die with lengthen’d shame.

Lord
Where was this lane?

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Close by the battle, ditch’d, and wall’d with turf;
Which gave advantage to an ancient soldier,
An honest one, I warrant; who deserved
So long a breeding as his white beard came to,
In doing this for’s country: athwart the lane,
He, with two striplings-lads more like to run
The country base than to commit such slaughter
With faces fit for masks, or rather fairer
Than those for preservation cased, or shame–
Made good the passage; cried to those that fled,
‘Our Britain s harts die flying, not our men:
To darkness fleet souls that fly backwards. Stand;
Or we are Romans and will give you that
Like beasts which you shun beastly, and may save,
But to look back in frown: stand, stand.’
These three,
Three thousand confident, in act as many–
For three performers are the file when all
The rest do nothing–with this word ‘Stand, stand,’
Accommodated by the place, more charming
With their own nobleness, which could have turn’d
A distaff to a lance, gilded pale looks,
Part shame, part spirit renew’d; that some,
turn’d coward
But by example–O, a sin in war,
Damn’d in the first beginners!–gan to look
The way that they did, and to grin like lions
Upon the pikes o’ the hunters. Then began
A stop i’ the chaser, a retire, anon
A rout, confusion thick; forthwith they fly
Chickens, the way which they stoop’d eagles; slaves,
The strides they victors made: and now our cowards,
Like fragments in hard voyages, became
The life o’ the need: having found the backdoor open
Of the unguarded hearts, heavens, how they wound!
Some slain before; some dying; some their friends
O’er borne i’ the former wave: ten, chased by one,
Are now each one the slaughter-man of twenty:
Those that would die or ere resist are grown
The mortal bugs o’ the field.

Lord
This was strange chance
A narrow lane, an old man, and two boys.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Nay, do not wonder at it: you are made
Rather to wonder at the things you hear
Than to work any. Will you rhyme upon’t,
And vent it for a mockery? Here is one:
‘Two boys, an old man twice a boy, a lane,
Preserved the Britons, was the Romans’ bane.’

Lord
Nay, be not angry, sir.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
‘Lack, to what end?
Who dares not stand his foe, I’ll be his friend;
For if he’ll do as he is made to do,
I know he’ll quickly fly my friendship too.
You have put me into rhyme.

Lord
Farewell; you’re angry.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Still going?

Exit Lord

This is a lord! O noble misery,
To be i’ the field, and ask ‘what news?’ of me!
To-day how many would have given their honours
To have saved their carcasses! took heel to do’t,
And yet died too! I, in mine own woe charm’d,
Could not find death where I did hear him groan,
Nor feel him where he struck: being an ugly monster,
‘Tis strange he hides him in fresh cups, soft beds,
Sweet words; or hath more ministers than we
That draw his knives i’ the war. Well, I will find him
For being now a favourer to the Briton,
No more a Briton, I have resumed again
The part I came in: fight I will no more,
But yield me to the veriest hind that shall
Once touch my shoulder. Great the slaughter is
Here made by the Roman; great the answer be
Britons must take. For me, my ransom’s death;
On either side I come to spend my breath;
Which neither here I’ll keep nor bear again,
But end it by some means for Imogen.

Enter two British Captains and Soldiers

First Captain
Great Jupiter be praised! Lucius is taken.
‘Tis thought the old man and his sons were angels.

Second Captain
There was a fourth man, in a silly habit,
That gave the affront with them.

First Captain
So ’tis reported:
But none of ’em can be found. Stand! who’s there?

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
A Roman,
Who had not now been drooping here, if seconds
Had answer’d him.

Second Captain
Lay hands on him; a dog!
A leg of Rome shall not return to tell
What crows have peck’d them here. He brags
his service
As if he were of note: bring him to the king.

Enter CYMBELINE, BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, ARVIRAGUS, PISANIO, Soldiers, Attendants, and Roman Captives. The Captains present POSTHUMUS LEONATUS to CYMBELINE, who delivers him over to a Gaoler: then exeunt omnes

SCENE IV. A British prison.

Enter POSTHUMUS LEONATUS and two Gaolers
First Gaoler
You shall not now be stol’n, you have locks upon you;
So graze as you find pasture.

Second Gaoler
Ay, or a stomach.

Exeunt Gaolers

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Most welcome, bondage! for thou art away,
think, to liberty: yet am I better
Than one that’s sick o’ the gout; since he had rather
Groan so in perpetuity than be cured
By the sure physician, death, who is the key
To unbar these locks. My conscience, thou art fetter’d
More than my shanks and wrists: you good gods, give me
The penitent instrument to pick that bolt,
Then, free for ever! Is’t enough I am sorry?
So children temporal fathers do appease;
Gods are more full of mercy. Must I repent?
I cannot do it better than in gyves,
Desired more than constrain’d: to satisfy,
If of my freedom ’tis the main part, take
No stricter render of me than my all.
I know you are more clement than vile men,
Who of their broken debtors take a third,
A sixth, a tenth, letting them thrive again
On their abatement: that’s not my desire:
For Imogen’s dear life take mine; and though
‘Tis not so dear, yet ’tis a life; you coin’d it:
‘Tween man and man they weigh not every stamp;
Though light, take pieces for the figure’s sake:
You rather mine, being yours: and so, great powers,
If you will take this audit, take this life,
And cancel these cold bonds. O Imogen!
I’ll speak to thee in silence.

Sleeps

Solemn music. Enter, as in an apparition, SICILIUS LEONATUS, father to Posthumus Leonatus, an old man, attired like a warrior; leading in his hand an ancient matron, his wife, and mother to Posthumus Leonatus, with music before them: then, after other music, follow the two young Leonati, brothers to Posthumus Leonatus, with wounds as they died in the wars. They circle Posthumus Leonatus round, as he lies sleeping

Sicilius Leonatus
No more, thou thunder-master, show
Thy spite on mortal flies:
With Mars fall out, with Juno chide,
That thy adulteries
Rates and revenges.
Hath my poor boy done aught but well,
Whose face I never saw?
I died whilst in the womb he stay’d
Attending nature’s law:
Whose father then, as men report
Thou orphans’ father art,
Thou shouldst have been, and shielded him
From this earth-vexing smart.

Mother
Lucina lent not me her aid,
But took me in my throes;
That from me was Posthumus ript,
Came crying ‘mongst his foes,
A thing of pity!

Sicilius Leonatus
Great nature, like his ancestry,
Moulded the stuff so fair,
That he deserved the praise o’ the world,
As great Sicilius’ heir.

First Brother
When once he was mature for man,
In Britain where was he
That could stand up his parallel;
Or fruitful object be
In eye of Imogen, that best
Could deem his dignity?

Mother
With marriage wherefore was he mock’d,
To be exiled, and thrown
From Leonati seat, and cast
From her his dearest one,
Sweet Imogen?

Sicilius Leonatus
Why did you suffer Iachimo,
Slight thing of Italy,
To taint his nobler heart and brain
With needless jealosy;
And to become the geck and scorn
O’ th’ other’s villany?

Second Brother
For this from stiller seats we came,
Our parents and us twain,
That striking in our country’s cause
Fell bravely and were slain,
Our fealty and Tenantius’ right
With honour to maintain.

First Brother
Like hardiment Posthumus hath
To Cymbeline perform’d:
Then, Jupiter, thou king of gods,
Why hast thou thus adjourn’d
The graces for his merits due,
Being all to dolours turn’d?

Sicilius Leonatus
Thy crystal window ope; look out;
No longer exercise
Upon a valiant race thy harsh
And potent injuries.

Mother
Since, Jupiter, our son is good,
Take off his miseries.

Sicilius Leonatus
Peep through thy marble mansion; help;
Or we poor ghosts will cry
To the shining synod of the rest
Against thy deity.

First Brother Second Brother
Help, Jupiter; or we appeal,
And from thy justice fly.

Jupiter descends in thunder and lightning, sitting upon an eagle: he throws a thunderbolt. The Apparitions fall on their knees

Jupiter
No more, you petty spirits of region low,
Offend our hearing; hush! How dare you ghosts
Accuse the thunderer, whose bolt, you know,
Sky-planted batters all rebelling coasts?
Poor shadows of Elysium, hence, and rest
Upon your never-withering banks of flowers:
Be not with mortal accidents opprest;
No care of yours it is; you know ’tis ours.
Whom best I love I cross; to make my gift,
The more delay’d, delighted. Be content;
Your low-laid son our godhead will uplift:
His comforts thrive, his trials well are spent.
Our Jovial star reign’d at his birth, and in
Our temple was he married. Rise, and fade.
He shall be lord of lady Imogen,
And happier much by his affliction made.
This tablet lay upon his breast, wherein
Our pleasure his full fortune doth confine:
and so, away: no further with your din
Express impatience, lest you stir up mine.
Mount, eagle, to my palace crystalline.

Ascends

Sicilius Leonatus
He came in thunder; his celestial breath
Was sulphurous to smell: the holy eagle
Stoop’d as to foot us: his ascension is
More sweet than our blest fields: his royal bird
Prunes the immortal wing and cloys his beak,
As when his god is pleased.

All
Thanks, Jupiter!

Sicilius Leonatus
The marble pavement closes, he is enter’d
His radiant root. Away! and, to be blest,
Let us with care perform his great behest.

The Apparitions vanish

Posthumus Leonatus
[Waking] Sleep, thou hast been a grandsire, and begot
A father to me; and thou hast created
A mother and two brothers: but, O scorn!
Gone! they went hence so soon as they were born:
And so I am awake. Poor wretches that depend
On greatness’ favour dream as I have done,
Wake and find nothing. But, alas, I swerve:
Many dream not to find, neither deserve,
And yet are steep’d in favours: so am I,
That have this golden chance and know not why.
What fairies haunt this ground? A book? O rare one!
Be not, as is our fangled world, a garment
Nobler than that it covers: let thy effects
So follow, to be most unlike our courtiers,
As good as promise.

Reads

‘When as a lion’s whelp shall, to himself unknown,
without seeking find, and be embraced by a piece of
tender air; and when from a stately cedar shall be
lopped branches, which, being dead many years,
shall after revive, be jointed to the old stock and
freshly grow; then shall Posthumus end his miseries,
Britain be fortunate and flourish in peace and plenty.’
‘Tis still a dream, or else such stuff as madmen
Tongue and brain not; either both or nothing;
Or senseless speaking or a speaking such
As sense cannot untie. Be what it is,
The action of my life is like it, which
I’ll keep, if but for sympathy.

Re-enter First Gaoler

First Gaoler
Come, sir, are you ready for death?

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Over-roasted rather; ready long ago.

First Gaoler
Hanging is the word, sir: if
you be ready for that, you are well cooked.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
So, if I prove a good repast to the
spectators, the dish pays the shot.

First Gaoler
A heavy reckoning for you, sir. But the comfort is,
you shall be called to no more payments, fear no
more tavern-bills; which are often the sadness of
parting, as the procuring of mirth: you come in
flint for want of meat, depart reeling with too
much drink; sorry that you have paid too much, and
sorry that you are paid too much; purse and brain
both empty; the brain the heavier for being too
light, the purse too light, being drawn of
heaviness: of this contradiction you shall now be
quit. O, the charity of a penny cord! It sums up
thousands in a trice: you have no true debitor and
creditor but it; of what’s past, is, and to come,
the discharge: your neck, sir, is pen, book and
counters; so the acquittance follows.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
I am merrier to die than thou art to live.

First Gaoler
Indeed, sir, he that sleeps feels not the
tooth-ache: but a man that were to sleep your
sleep, and a hangman to help him to bed, I think he
would change places with his officer; for, look you,
sir, you know not which way you shall go.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Yes, indeed do I, fellow.

First Gaoler
Your death has eyes in ‘s head then; I have not seen
him so pictured: you must either be directed by
some that take upon them to know, or do take upon
yourself that which I am sure you do not know, or
jump the after inquiry on your own peril: and how
you shall speed in your journey’s end, I think you’ll
never return to tell one.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
I tell thee, fellow, there are none want eyes to
direct them the way I am going, but such as wink and
will not use them.

First Gaoler
What an infinite mock is this, that a man should
have the best use of eyes to see the way of
blindness! I am sure hanging’s the way of winking.

Enter a Messenger

Messenger
Knock off his manacles; bring your prisoner to the king.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Thou bring’st good news; I am called to be made free.

First Gaoler
I’ll be hang’d then.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Thou shalt be then freer than a gaoler; no bolts for the dead.

Exeunt POSTHUMUS LEONATUS and Messenger

First Gaoler
Unless a man would marry a gallows and beget young
gibbets, I never saw one so prone. Yet, on my
conscience, there are verier knaves desire to live,
for all he be a Roman: and there be some of them
too that die against their wills; so should I, if I
were one. I would we were all of one mind, and one
mind good; O, there were desolation of gaolers and
gallowses! I speak against my present profit, but
my wish hath a preferment in ‘t.

Exeunt

SCENE V. Cymbeline’s tent.

Enter CYMBELINE, BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, ARVIRAGUS, PISANIO, Lords, Officers, and Attendants
CYMBELINE
Stand by my side, you whom the gods have made
Preservers of my throne. Woe is my heart
That the poor soldier that so richly fought,
Whose rags shamed gilded arms, whose naked breast
Stepp’d before larges of proof, cannot be found:
He shall be happy that can find him, if
Our grace can make him so.

BELARIUS
I never saw
Such noble fury in so poor a thing;
Such precious deeds in one that promises nought
But beggary and poor looks.

CYMBELINE
No tidings of him?

PISANIO
He hath been search’d among the dead and living,
But no trace of him.

CYMBELINE
To my grief, I am
The heir of his reward;

To BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, and ARVIRAGUS

which I will add
To you, the liver, heart and brain of Britain,
By whom I grant she lives. ‘Tis now the time
To ask of whence you are. Report it.

BELARIUS
Sir,
In Cambria are we born, and gentlemen:
Further to boast were neither true nor modest,
Unless I add, we are honest.

CYMBELINE
Bow your knees.
Arise my knights o’ the battle: I create you
Companions to our person and will fit you
With dignities becoming your estates.

Enter CORNELIUS and Ladies

There’s business in these faces. Why so sadly
Greet you our victory? you look like Romans,
And not o’ the court of Britain.

CORNELIUS
Hail, great king!
To sour your happiness, I must report
The queen is dead.

CYMBELINE
Who worse than a physician
Would this report become? But I consider,
By medicine life may be prolong’d, yet death
Will seize the doctor too. How ended she?

CORNELIUS
With horror, madly dying, like her life,
Which, being cruel to the world, concluded
Most cruel to herself. What she confess’d
I will report, so please you: these her women
Can trip me, if I err; who with wet cheeks
Were present when she finish’d.

CYMBELINE
Prithee, say.

CORNELIUS
First, she confess’d she never loved you, only
Affected greatness got by you, not you:
Married your royalty, was wife to your place;
Abhorr’d your person.

CYMBELINE
She alone knew this;
And, but she spoke it dying, I would not
Believe her lips in opening it. Proceed.

CORNELIUS
Your daughter, whom she bore in hand to love
With such integrity, she did confess
Was as a scorpion to her sight; whose life,
But that her flight prevented it, she had
Ta’en off by poison.

CYMBELINE
O most delicate fiend!
Who is ‘t can read a woman? Is there more?

CORNELIUS
More, sir, and worse. She did confess she had
For you a mortal mineral; which, being took,
Should by the minute feed on life and lingering
By inches waste you: in which time she purposed,
By watching, weeping, tendance, kissing, to
O’ercome you with her show, and in time,
When she had fitted you with her craft, to work
Her son into the adoption of the crown:
But, failing of her end by his strange absence,
Grew shameless-desperate; open’d, in despite
Of heaven and men, her purposes; repented
The evils she hatch’d were not effected; so
Despairing died.

CYMBELINE
Heard you all this, her women?

First Lady
We did, so please your highness.

CYMBELINE
Mine eyes
Were not in fault, for she was beautiful;
Mine ears, that heard her flattery; nor my heart,
That thought her like her seeming; it had
been vicious
To have mistrusted her: yet, O my daughter!
That it was folly in me, thou mayst say,
And prove it in thy feeling. Heaven mend all!

Enter LUCIUS, IACHIMO, the Soothsayer, and other Roman Prisoners, guarded; POSTHUMUS LEONATUS behind, and IMOGEN

Thou comest not, Caius, now for tribute that
The Britons have razed out, though with the loss
Of many a bold one; whose kinsmen have made suit
That their good souls may be appeased with slaughter
Of you their captives, which ourself have granted:
So think of your estate.

CAIUS LUCIUS
Consider, sir, the chance of war: the day
Was yours by accident; had it gone with us,
We should not, when the blood was cool,
have threaten’d
Our prisoners with the sword. But since the gods
Will have it thus, that nothing but our lives
May be call’d ransom, let it come: sufficeth
A Roman with a Roman’s heart can suffer:
Augustus lives to think on’t: and so much
For my peculiar care. This one thing only
I will entreat; my boy, a Briton born,
Let him be ransom’d: never master had
A page so kind, so duteous, diligent,
So tender over his occasions, true,
So feat, so nurse-like: let his virtue join
With my request, which I make bold your highness
Cannot deny; he hath done no Briton harm,
Though he have served a Roman: save him, sir,
And spare no blood beside.

CYMBELINE
I have surely seen him:
His favour is familiar to me. Boy,
Thou hast look’d thyself into my grace,
And art mine own. I know not why, wherefore,
To say ‘live, boy:’ ne’er thank thy master; live:
And ask of Cymbeline what boon thou wilt,
Fitting my bounty and thy state, I’ll give it;
Yea, though thou do demand a prisoner,
The noblest ta’en.

IMOGEN
I humbly thank your highness.

CAIUS LUCIUS
I do not bid thee beg my life, good lad;
And yet I know thou wilt.

IMOGEN
No, no: alack,
There’s other work in hand: I see a thing
Bitter to me as death: your life, good master,
Must shuffle for itself.

CAIUS LUCIUS
The boy disdains me,
He leaves me, scorns me: briefly die their joys
That place them on the truth of girls and boys.
Why stands he so perplex’d?

CYMBELINE
What wouldst thou, boy?
I love thee more and more: think more and more
What’s best to ask. Know’st him thou look’st on? speak,
Wilt have him live? Is he thy kin? thy friend?

IMOGEN
He is a Roman; no more kin to me
Than I to your highness; who, being born your vassal,
Am something nearer.

CYMBELINE
Wherefore eyest him so?

IMOGEN
I’ll tell you, sir, in private, if you please
To give me hearing.

CYMBELINE
Ay, with all my heart,
And lend my best attention. What’s thy name?

IMOGEN
Fidele, sir.

CYMBELINE
Thou’rt my good youth, my page;
I’ll be thy master: walk with me; speak freely.

CYMBELINE and IMOGEN converse apart

BELARIUS
Is not this boy revived from death?

ARVIRAGUS
One sand another
Not more resembles that sweet rosy lad
Who died, and was Fidele. What think you?

GUIDERIUS
The same dead thing alive.

BELARIUS
Peace, peace! see further; he eyes us not; forbear;
Creatures may be alike: were ‘t he, I am sure
He would have spoke to us.

GUIDERIUS
But we saw him dead.

BELARIUS
Be silent; let’s see further.

PISANIO
[Aside] It is my mistress:
Since she is living, let the time run on
To good or bad.

CYMBELINE and IMOGEN come forward

CYMBELINE
Come, stand thou by our side;
Make thy demand aloud.

To IACHIMO

Sir, step you forth;
Give answer to this boy, and do it freely;
Or, by our greatness and the grace of it,
Which is our honour, bitter torture shall
Winnow the truth from falsehood. On, speak to him.

IMOGEN
My boon is, that this gentleman may render
Of whom he had this ring.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
[Aside] What’s that to him?

CYMBELINE
That diamond upon your finger, say
How came it yours?

IACHIMO
Thou’lt torture me to leave unspoken that
Which, to be spoke, would torture thee.

CYMBELINE
How! me?

IACHIMO
I am glad to be constrain’d to utter that
Which torments me to conceal. By villany
I got this ring: ’twas Leonatus’ jewel;
Whom thou didst banish; and–which more may
grieve thee,
As it doth me–a nobler sir ne’er lived
‘Twixt sky and ground. Wilt thou hear more, my lord?

CYMBELINE
All that belongs to this.

IACHIMO
That paragon, thy daughter,–
For whom my heart drops blood, and my false spirits
Quail to remember–Give me leave; I faint.

CYMBELINE
My daughter! what of her? Renew thy strength:
I had rather thou shouldst live while nature will
Than die ere I hear more: strive, man, and speak.

IACHIMO
Upon a time,–unhappy was the clock
That struck the hour!–it was in Rome,–accursed
The mansion where!–’twas at a feast,–O, would
Our viands had been poison’d, or at least
Those which I heaved to head!–the good Posthumus–
What should I say? he was too good to be
Where ill men were; and was the best of all
Amongst the rarest of good ones,–sitting sadly,
Hearing us praise our loves of Italy
For beauty that made barren the swell’d boast
Of him that best could speak, for feature, laming
The shrine of Venus, or straight-pight Minerva.
Postures beyond brief nature, for condition,
A shop of all the qualities that man
Loves woman for, besides that hook of wiving,
Fairness which strikes the eye–

CYMBELINE
I stand on fire:
Come to the matter.

IACHIMO
All too soon I shall,
Unless thou wouldst grieve quickly. This Posthumus,
Most like a noble lord in love and one
That had a royal lover, took his hint;
And, not dispraising whom we praised,–therein
He was as calm as virtue–he began
His mistress’ picture; which by his tongue
being made,
And then a mind put in’t, either our brags
Were crack’d of kitchen-trolls, or his description
Proved us unspeaking sots.

CYMBELINE
Nay, nay, to the purpose.

IACHIMO
Your daughter’s chastity–there it begins.
He spake of her, as Dian had hot dreams,
And she alone were cold: whereat I, wretch,
Made scruple of his praise; and wager’d with him
Pieces of gold ‘gainst this which then he wore
Upon his honour’d finger, to attain
In suit the place of’s bed and win this ring
By hers and mine adultery. He, true knight,
No lesser of her honour confident
Than I did truly find her, stakes this ring;
And would so, had it been a carbuncle
Of Phoebus’ wheel, and might so safely, had it
Been all the worth of’s car. Away to Britain
Post I in this design: well may you, sir,
Remember me at court; where I was taught
Of your chaste daughter the wide difference
‘Twixt amorous and villanous. Being thus quench’d
Of hope, not longing, mine Italian brain
‘Gan in your duller Britain operate
Most vilely; for my vantage, excellent:
And, to be brief, my practise so prevail’d,
That I return’d with simular proof enough
To make the noble Leonatus mad,
By wounding his belief in her renown
With tokens thus, and thus; averting notes
Of chamber-hanging, pictures, this her bracelet,–
O cunning, how I got it!–nay, some marks
Of secret on her person, that he could not
But think her bond of chastity quite crack’d,
I having ta’en the forfeit. Whereupon–
Methinks, I see him now–

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
[Advancing] Ay, so thou dost,
Italian fiend! Ay me, most credulous fool,
Egregious murderer, thief, any thing
That’s due to all the villains past, in being,
To come! O, give me cord, or knife, or poison,
Some upright justicer! Thou, king, send out
For torturers ingenious: it is I
That all the abhorred things o’ the earth amend
By being worse than they. I am Posthumus,
That kill’d thy daughter:–villain-like, I lie–
That caused a lesser villain than myself,
A sacrilegious thief, to do’t: the temple
Of virtue was she; yea, and she herself.
Spit, and throw stone s, cast mire upon me, set
The dogs o’ the street to bay me: every villain
Be call’d Posthumus Leonitus; and
Be villany less than ’twas! O Imogen!
My queen, my life, my wife! O Imogen,
Imogen, Imogen!

IMOGEN
Peace, my lord; hear, hear–

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Shall’s have a play of this? Thou scornful page,
There lie thy part.

Striking her: she falls

PISANIO
O, gentlemen, help!
Mine and your mistress! O, my lord Posthumus!
You ne’er kill’d Imogen til now. Help, help!
Mine honour’d lady!

CYMBELINE
Does the world go round?

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
How come these staggers on me?

PISANIO
Wake, my mistress!

CYMBELINE
If this be so, the gods do mean to strike me
To death with mortal joy.

PISANIO
How fares thy mistress?

IMOGEN
O, get thee from my sight;
Thou gavest me poison: dangerous fellow, hence!
Breathe not where princes are.

CYMBELINE
The tune of Imogen!

PISANIO
Lady,
The gods throw stones of sulphur on me, if
That box I gave you was not thought by me
A precious thing: I had it from the queen.

CYMBELINE
New matter still?

IMOGEN
It poison’d me.

CORNELIUS
O gods!
I left out one thing which the queen confess’d.
Which must approve thee honest: ‘If Pisanio
Have,’ said she, ‘given his mistress that confection
Which I gave him for cordial, she is served
As I would serve a rat.’

CYMBELINE
What’s this, Comelius?

CORNELIUS
The queen, sir, very oft importuned me
To temper poisons for her, still pretending
The satisfaction of her knowledge only
In killing creatures vile, as cats and dogs,
Of no esteem: I, dreading that her purpose
Was of more danger, did compound for her
A certain stuff, which, being ta’en, would cease
The present power of life, but in short time
All offices of nature should again
Do their due functions. Have you ta’en of it?

IMOGEN
Most like I did, for I was dead.

BELARIUS
My boys,
There was our error.

GUIDERIUS
This is, sure, Fidele.

IMOGEN
Why did you throw your wedded lady from you?
Think that you are upon a rock; and now
Throw me again.

Embracing him

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Hang there like a fruit, my soul,
Till the tree die!

CYMBELINE
How now, my flesh, my child!
What, makest thou me a dullard in this act?
Wilt thou not speak to me?

IMOGEN
[Kneeling] Your blessing, sir.

BELARIUS
[To GUIDERIUS and ARVIRAGUS] Though you did love
this youth, I blame ye not:
You had a motive for’t.

CYMBELINE
My tears that fall
Prove holy water on thee! Imogen,
Thy mother’s dead.

IMOGEN
I am sorry for’t, my lord.

CYMBELINE
O, she was nought; and long of her it was
That we meet here so strangely: but her son
Is gone, we know not how nor where.

PISANIO
My lord,
Now fear is from me, I’ll speak troth. Lord Cloten,
Upon my lady’s missing, came to me
With his sword drawn; foam’d at the mouth, and swore,
If I discover’d not which way she was gone,
It was my instant death. By accident,
had a feigned letter of my master’s
Then in my pocket; which directed him
To seek her on the mountains near to Milford;
Where, in a frenzy, in my master’s garments,
Which he enforced from me, away he posts
With unchaste purpose and with oath to violate
My lady’s honour: what became of him
I further know not.

GUIDERIUS
Let me end the story:
I slew him there.

CYMBELINE
Marry, the gods forfend!
I would not thy good deeds should from my lips
Pluck a bard sentence: prithee, valiant youth,
Deny’t again.

GUIDERIUS
I have spoke it, and I did it.

CYMBELINE
He was a prince.

GUIDERIUS
A most incivil one: the wrongs he did me
Were nothing prince-like; for he did provoke me
With language that would make me spurn the sea,
If it could so roar to me: I cut off’s head;
And am right glad he is not standing here
To tell this tale of mine.

CYMBELINE
I am sorry for thee:
By thine own tongue thou art condemn’d, and must
Endure our law: thou’rt dead.

IMOGEN
That headless man
I thought had been my lord.

CYMBELINE
Bind the offender,
And take him from our presence.

BELARIUS
Stay, sir king:
This man is better than the man he slew,
As well descended as thyself; and hath
More of thee merited than a band of Clotens
Had ever scar for.

To the Guard

Let his arms alone;
They were not born for bondage.

CYMBELINE
Why, old soldier,
Wilt thou undo the worth thou art unpaid for,
By tasting of our wrath? How of descent
As good as we?

ARVIRAGUS
In that he spake too far.

CYMBELINE
And thou shalt die for’t.

BELARIUS
We will die all three:
But I will prove that two on’s are as good
As I have given out him. My sons, I must,
For mine own part, unfold a dangerous speech,
Though, haply, well for you.

ARVIRAGUS
Your danger’s ours.

GUIDERIUS
And our good his.

BELARIUS
Have at it then, by leave.
Thou hadst, great king, a subject who
Was call’d Belarius.

CYMBELINE
What of him? he is
A banish’d traitor.

BELARIUS
He it is that hath
Assumed this age; indeed a banish’d man;
I know not how a traitor.

CYMBELINE
Take him hence:
The whole world shall not save him.

BELARIUS
Not too hot:
First pay me for the nursing of thy sons;
And let it be confiscate all, so soon
As I have received it.

CYMBELINE
Nursing of my sons!

BELARIUS
I am too blunt and saucy: here’s my knee:
Ere I arise, I will prefer my sons;
Then spare not the old father. Mighty sir,
These two young gentlemen, that call me father
And think they are my sons, are none of mine;
They are the issue of your loins, my liege,
And blood of your begetting.

CYMBELINE
How! my issue!

BELARIUS
So sure as you your father’s. I, old Morgan,
Am that Belarius whom you sometime banish’d:
Your pleasure was my mere offence, my punishment
Itself, and all my treason; that I suffer’d
Was all the harm I did. These gentle princes–
For such and so they are–these twenty years
Have I train’d up: those arts they have as I
Could put into them; my breeding was, sir, as
Your highness knows. Their nurse, Euriphile,
Whom for Theft I wedded, stole these children
Upon my banishment: I moved her to’t,
Having received the punishment before,
For that which I did then: beaten for loyalty
Excited me to treason: their dear loss,
The more of you ’twas felt, the more it shaped
Unto my end of stealing them. But, gracious sir,
Here are your sons again; and I must lose
Two of the sweet’st companions in the world.
The benediction of these covering heavens
Fall on their heads like dew! for they are worthy
To inlay heaven with stars.

CYMBELINE
Thou weep’st, and speak’st.
The service that you three have done is more
Unlike than this thou tell’st. I lost my children:
If these be they, I know not how to wish
A pair of worthier sons.

BELARIUS
Be pleased awhile.
This gentleman, whom I call Polydore,
Most worthy prince, as yours, is true Guiderius:
This gentleman, my Cadwal, Arviragus,
Your younger princely son; he, sir, was lapp’d
In a most curious mantle, wrought by the hand
Of his queen mother, which for more probation
I can with ease produce.

CYMBELINE
Guiderius had
Upon his neck a mole, a sanguine star;
It was a mark of wonder.

BELARIUS
This is he;
Who hath upon him still that natural stamp:
It was wise nature’s end in the donation,
To be his evidence now.

CYMBELINE
O, what, am I
A mother to the birth of three? Ne’er mother
Rejoiced deliverance more. Blest pray you be,
That, after this strange starting from your orbs,
may reign in them now! O Imogen,
Thou hast lost by this a kingdom.

IMOGEN
No, my lord;
I have got two worlds by ‘t. O my gentle brothers,
Have we thus met? O, never say hereafter
But I am truest speaker you call’d me brother,
When I was but your sister; I you brothers,
When ye were so indeed.

CYMBELINE
Did you e’er meet?

ARVIRAGUS
Ay, my good lord.

GUIDERIUS
And at first meeting loved;
Continued so, until we thought he died.

CORNELIUS
By the queen’s dram she swallow’d.

CYMBELINE
O rare instinct!
When shall I hear all through? This fierce
abridgement
Hath to it circumstantial branches, which
Distinction should be rich in. Where? how lived You?
And when came you to serve our Roman captive?
How parted with your brothers? how first met them?
Why fled you from the court? and whither? These,
And your three motives to the battle, with
I know not how much more, should be demanded;
And all the other by-dependencies,
From chance to chance: but nor the time nor place
Will serve our long inter’gatories. See,
Posthumus anchors upon Imogen,
And she, like harmless lightning, throws her eye
On him, her brother, me, her master, hitting
Each object with a joy: the counterchange
Is severally in all. Let’s quit this ground,
And smoke the temple with our sacrifices.

To BELARIUS

Thou art my brother; so we’ll hold thee ever.

IMOGEN
You are my father too, and did relieve me,
To see this gracious season.

CYMBELINE
All o’erjoy’d,
Save these in bonds: let them be joyful too,
For they shall taste our comfort.

IMOGEN
My good master,
I will yet do you service.

CAIUS LUCIUS
Happy be you!

CYMBELINE
The forlorn soldier, that so nobly fought,
He would have well becomed this place, and graced
The thankings of a king.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
I am, sir,
The soldier that did company these three
In poor beseeming; ’twas a fitment for
The purpose I then follow’d. That I was he,
Speak, Iachimo: I had you down and might
Have made you finish.

IACHIMO
[Kneeling] I am down again:
But now my heavy conscience sinks my knee,
As then your force did. Take that life, beseech you,
Which I so often owe: but your ring first;
And here the bracelet of the truest princess
That ever swore her faith.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Kneel not to me:
The power that I have on you is, to spare you;
The malice towards you to forgive you: live,
And deal with others better.

CYMBELINE
Nobly doom’d!
We’ll learn our freeness of a son-in-law;
Pardon’s the word to all.

ARVIRAGUS
You holp us, sir,
As you did mean indeed to be our brother;
Joy’d are we that you are.

POSTHUMUS LEONATUS
Your servant, princes. Good my lord of Rome,
Call forth your soothsayer: as I slept, methought
Great Jupiter, upon his eagle back’d,
Appear’d to me, with other spritely shows
Of mine own kindred: when I waked, I found
This label on my bosom; whose containing
Is so from sense in hardness, that I can
Make no collection of it: let him show
His skill in the construction.

CAIUS LUCIUS
Philarmonus!

Soothsayer
Here, my good lord.

CAIUS LUCIUS
Read, and declare the meaning.

Soothsayer
[Reads] ‘When as a lion’s whelp shall, to himself
unknown, without seeking find, and be embraced by a
piece of tender air; and when from a stately cedar
shall be lopped branches, which, being dead many
years, shall after revive, be jointed to the old
stock, and freshly grow; then shall Posthumus end
his miseries, Britain be fortunate and flourish in
peace and plenty.’
Thou, Leonatus, art the lion’s whelp;
The fit and apt construction of thy name,
Being Leonatus, doth import so much.

To CYMBELINE

The piece of tender air, thy virtuous daughter,
Which we call ‘mollis aer;’ and ‘mollis aer’
We term it ‘mulier:’ which ‘mulier’ I divine
Is this most constant wife; who, even now,
Answering the letter of the oracle,
Unknown to you, unsought, were clipp’d about
With this most tender air.

CYMBELINE
This hath some seeming.

Soothsayer
The lofty cedar, royal Cymbeline,
Personates thee: and thy lopp’d branches point
Thy two sons forth; who, by Belarius stol’n,
For many years thought dead, are now revived,
To the majestic cedar join’d, whose issue
Promises Britain peace and plenty.

CYMBELINE
Well
My peace we will begin. And, Caius Lucius,
Although the victor, we submit to Caesar,
And to the Roman empire; promising
To pay our wonted tribute, from the which
We were dissuaded by our wicked queen;
Whom heavens, in justice, both on her and hers,
Have laid most heavy hand.

Soothsayer
The fingers of the powers above do tune
The harmony of this peace. The vision
Which I made known to Lucius, ere the stroke
Of this yet scarce-cold battle, at this instant
Is full accomplish’d; for the Roman eagle,
From south to west on wing soaring aloft,
Lessen’d herself, and in the beams o’ the sun
So vanish’d: which foreshow’d our princely eagle,
The imperial Caesar, should again unite
His favour with the radiant Cymbeline,
Which shines here in the west.

CYMBELINE
Laud we the gods;
And let our crooked smokes climb to their nostrils
From our blest altars. Publish we this peace
To all our subjects. Set we forward: let
A Roman and a British ensign wave
Friendly together: so through Lud’s-town march:
And in the temple of great Jupiter
Our peace we’ll ratify; seal it with feasts.
Set on there! Never was a war did cease,
Ere bloody hands were wash’d, with such a peace.

Exeunt

Please join me again on 02/15/16 for more fun with Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors

 


Good or Bad©

Copyright 2014

By Felina Silver Robinson

A good child can turn into a sensitive, warm-hearted caring, significant adult
A bad child can turn into a pompous, uncaring, egotistical, moronic, spawn

A good thought can grow into a courageous deed
A bad thought can turn into a heinous crime

A good person can become a saint
A bad person can devour evil

 


Patience©

 Copyright 1998

By Felina Silver

What do you need when you’re running late and you don’t see a bus in sight?

Patience

What do you need when you are one person?

And everyone needs everything at the same time

Patience

What do you need when you race home to catch your close friend,

Being interviewed on the 6 o’clock news?

You sit patiently waiting as your stomach growls

Your throat is dry and 6:30 has come and gone

Patience

What do you need when you are feeling kind of blue?

Your boss calls to tell you you’ve lost your job?

Patience

What do you need when you no longer have patience?

Luck and Lot’s of it!!


The Cask of Amontillado.

[Godey’s Lady’s Book, November, 1846.]

THE thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge. You, who so well know the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that I gave utterance to a threat. At length I would be avenged; this was a point definitively settled — but the very definitiveness with which it was resolved precluded the idea of risk. I must not only punish but punish with impunity. A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser. It is equally unredressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to him who has done the wrong.

It must be understood that neither by word nor deed had I given Fortunato cause to doubt my good will. I continued, as was my wont, to smile in his face, and he did not perceive that my smile now was at the thought of his immolation.

He had a weak point — this Fortunato — although in other regards he was a man to be respected and even feared. He prided himself upon his connoisseurship in wine. Few Italians have the true virtuoso spirit. For the most part their enthusiasm is adopted to suit the time and opportunity, to practice imposture upon the British and Austrian millionaires. In painting and gemmary, Fortunato, like his countrymen, was a quack, but in the matter of old wines he was sincere. In this [page 168:] respect I did not differ from him materially; — I was skilful in the Italian vintages myself, and bought largely whenever I could.

It was about dusk, one evening during the supreme madness of the carnival season, that I encountered my friend. He accosted me with excessive warmth, for he had been drinking much. The man wore motley. He had on a tight-fitting parti-striped dress, and his head was surmounted by the conical cap and bells. I was so pleased to see him that I thought I should never have done wringing his hand.

I said to him — “My dear Fortunato, you are luckily met. How remarkably well you are looking to-day. But I have received a pipe of what passes for Amontillado, and I have my doubts.”

“How?” said he. “Amontillado? A pipe? Impossible! And in the middle of the carnival!”

“I have my doubts,” I replied; “and I was silly enough to pay the full Amontillado price without consulting you in the matter. You were not to be found, and I was fearful of losing a bargain.”

“Amontillado!”

“I have my doubts.”

“Amontillado!”

“And I must satisfy them.”

“Amontillado!”

“As you are engaged, I am on my way to Luchresi. If any one has a critical turn it is he. He will tell me ——”

“Luchresi cannot tell Amontillado from Sherry.”

“And yet some fools will have it that his taste is a match for your own.”

“Come, let us go.”

“Whither?” [page 169:]

“To your vaults.”

“My friend, no; I will not impose upon your good nature. I perceive you have an engagement. Luchresi ——”

“I have no engagement; — come.”

“My friend, no. It is not the engagement, but the severe cold with which I perceive you are afflicted. The vaults are insufferably damp. They are encrusted with nitre.”

“Let us go, nevertheless. The cold is merely nothing. Amontillado! You have been imposed upon. And as for Luchresi, he cannot distinguish Sherry from Amontillado.”

Thus speaking, Fortunato possessed himself of my arm; and putting on a mask of black silk and drawing a roquelaire closely about my person, I suffered him to hurry me to my palazzo.

There were no attendants at home; they had absconded to make merry in honour of the time. I had told them that I should not return until the morning, and had given them explicit orders not to stir from the house. These orders were sufficient, I well knew, to insure their immediate disappearance, one and all, as soon as my back was turned.

I took from their sconces two flambeaux, and giving one to Fortunato, bowed him through several suites of rooms to the archway that led into the vaults. I passed down a long and winding staircase, requesting him to be cautious as he followed. We came at length to the foot of the descent, and stood together upon the damp ground of the catacombs of the Montresors.

The gait of my friend was unsteady, and the bells upon his cap jingled as he strode.

“The pipe,” said he. [page 170:]

“It is farther on,” said I; “but observe the white web-work which gleams from these cavern walls.”

He turned towards me, and looked into my eyes with two filmy orbs that distilled the rheum of intoxication.

“Nitre?” he asked, at length.

“Nitre,” I replied. “How long have you had that cough?”

“Ugh! ugh! ugh! — ugh! ugh! ugh! — ugh! ugh! ugh! — ugh! ugh! ugh! — ugh! ugh! ugh!”

My poor friend found it impossible to reply for many minutes.

“It is nothing,” he said, at last.

“Come,” I said, with decision, “we will go back; your health is precious. You are rich, respected, admired, beloved; you are happy, as once I was. You are a man to be missed. For me it is no matter. We will go back; you will be ill, and I cannot be responsible. Besides, there is Luchresi ——”

“Enough,” he said; “the cough is a mere nothing; it will not kill me. I shall not die of a cough.”

“True — true,” I replied; “and, indeed, I had no intention of alarming you unnecessarily — but you should use all proper caution. A draught of this Medoc will defend us from the damps.”

Here I knocked off the neck of a bottle which I drew from a long row of its fellows that lay upon the mould.

“Drink,” I said, presenting him the wine.

He raised it to his lips with a leer. He paused and nodded to me familiarly, while his bells jingled.

“I drink,” he said, “to the buried that repose around us.” [page 171:]

“And I to your long life.”

He again took my arm, and we proceeded.

“These vaults,” he said, “are extensive.”

“The Montresors,” I replied, “were a great and numerous family.”

“I forget your arms.”

“A huge human foot d’or, in a field azure; the foot crushes a serpent rampant whose fangs are imbedded in the heel.”

“And the motto?”

Nemo me impune lacessit.”

“Good!” he said.

The wine sparkled in his eyes and the bells jingled. My own fancy grew warm with the Medoc. We had passed through long walls of piled skeletons, with casks and puncheons intermingling, into the inmost recesses of the catacombs. I paused again, and this time I made bold to seize Fortunato by an arm above the elbow.

“The nitre!” I said: “see, it increases. It hangs like moss upon the vaults. We are below the river’s bed. The drops of moisture trickle among the bones. Come, we will go back ere it is too late. Your cough ——”

“It is nothing,” he said; “let us go on. But first, another draught of the Medoc.”

I broke and reached him a flaçon of De Grâve. He emptied it at a breath. His eyes flashed with a fierce light. He laughed and threw the bottle upwards with a gesticulation I did not understand.

I looked at him in surprise. He repeated the movement — a grotesque one.

“You do not comprehend?” he said.

“Not I,” I replied. [page 172:]

“Then you are not of the brotherhood.”

“How?”

“You are not of the masons.”

“Yes, yes,” I said; “yes, yes.”

“You? Impossible! A mason?”

“A mason,” I replied.

“A sign,” he said, “a sign.”

“It is this,” I answered, producing from beneath the folds of my roquelaire a trowel.

“You jest,” he exclaimed, recoiling a few paces. “But let us proceed to the Amontillado.”

“Be it so,” I said, replacing the tool beneath the cloak and again offering him my arm. He leaned upon it heavily. We continued our route in search of the Amontillado. We passed through a range of low arches, descended, passed on, and descending again, arrived at a deep crypt, in which the foulness of the air caused our flambeaux rather to glow than flame.

At the most remote end of the crypt there appeared another less spacious. Its walls had been lined with human remains, piled to the vault overhead, in the fashion of the great catacombs of Paris. Three sides of this interior crypt were still ornamented in this manner. From the fourth side the bones had been thrown down, and lay promiscuously upon the earth, forming at one point a mound of some size. Within the wall thus exposed by the displacing of the bones, we perceived a still interior crypt or recess, in depth about four feet, in width three, in height six or seven. It seemed to have been constructed for no especial use within itself, but formed merely the interval between two of the colossal supports of the roof of the catacombs, and was backed by one of their circumscribing walls of solid granite. [page 173:]

It was in vain that Fortunato, uplifting his dull torch, endeavoured to pry into the depths of the recess. Its termination the feeble light did not enable us to see.

“Proceed,” I said; “herein is the Amontillado. As for Luchresi ——”

“He is an ignoramus,” interrupted my friend, as he stepped unsteadily forward, while I followed immediately at his heels. In an instant he had reached the extremity of the niche, and finding his progress arrested by the rock, stood stupidly bewildered. A moment more and I had fettered him to the granite. In its surface were two iron staples, distant from each other about two feet, horizontally. From one of these depended a short chain, from the other a padlock. Throwing the links about his waist, it was but the work of a few seconds to secure it. He was too much astounded to resist. Withdrawing the key I stepped back from the recess.

“Pass your hand,” I said, “over the wall; you cannot help feeling the nitre. Indeed, it is very damp. Once more let me implore you to return. No? Then I will positively leave you. But I must first render you all the little attentions in my power.”

“The Amontillado!” ejaculated my friend, not yet recovered from his astonishment.

“True,” I replied; “the Amontillado.”

As I said these words I busied myself among the pile of bones of which I have before spoken. Throwing them aside, I soon uncovered a quantity of building stone and mortar. With these materials and with the aid of my trowel, I began vigorously to wall up the entrance of the niche.

I had scarcely laid the first tier of my masonry [page 174:] when I discovered that the intoxication of Fortunato had in great measure worn off. The earliest indication I had of this was a low moaning cry from the depth of the recess. It was not the cry of a drunken man. There was then a long and obstinate silence. I laid the second tier, and the third, and the fourth; and then I heard the furious vibration of the chain. The noise lasted for several minutes, during which, that I might hearken to it with the more satisfaction, I ceased my labours and sat down upon the bones. When at last the clanking subsided, I resumed the trowel, and finished without interruption the fifth, the sixth, and the seventh tier. The wall was now nearly upon a level with my breast. I again paused, and holding the flambeaux over the mason-work, threw a few feeble rays upon the figure within.

A succession of loud and shrill screams, bursting suddenly from the throat of the chained form, seemed to thrust me violently back. For a brief moment I hesitated, I trembled. Unsheathing my rapier, I began to grope with it about the recess; but the thought of an instant reassured me. I placed my hand upon the solid fabric of the catacombs, and felt satisfied. I reapproached the wall. I replied to the yells of him who clamoured. I re-echoed — I aided — I surpassed them in volume and in strength. I did this, and the clamourer grew still.

It was now midnight, and my task was drawing to a close. I had completed the eighth, the ninth and the tenth tier. I had finished a portion of the last and the eleventh; there remained but a single stone to be fitted and plastered in. I struggled with its weight; I placed it partially in its destined position. But now there came from out the niche a low laugh that erected [page 175:] the hairs upon my head. It was succeeded by a sad voice, which I had difficulty in recognising as that of the noble Fortunato. The voice said —

“Ha! ha! ha! — he! he! he! — a very good joke, indeed — an excellent jest. We will have many a rich laugh about it at the palazzo — he! he! he! — over our wine — he! he! he!”

“The Amontillado!” I said.

“He! he! he! — he! he! he! — yes, the Amontillado. But is it not getting late? Will not they be awaiting us at the palazzo — the Lady Fortunato and the rest? Let us be gone.”

“Yes,” I said, “let us be gone.”

For the love of God, Montressor!

“Yes,” I said, “for the love of God!”

But to these words I hearkened in vain for a reply. I grew impatient. I called aloud —

“Fortunato!”

No answer. I called again —

“Fortunato!” No answer still. I thrust a torch through the remaining aperture and let it fall within. There came forth in return only a jingling of the bells. My heart grew sick; it was the dampness of the catacombs that made it so. I hastened to make an end of my labour. I forced the last stone into its position; I plastered it up. Against the new masonry I re-erected the old rampart of bones. For the half of a century no mortal has disturbed them. In pace requiescat!


Image

Class Is…©

Copyright 2013

By FelinaSilver Robinson

Class is…

When you care enough about others

Not to say things that will hurt them

Scars run deep in people

They are not always visible

Words can’t be erased from your memories

Nor can the pain that has been inflicted

Scars may deepen

And grow into hate

Which may fester into things that go bad

Don’t feed the pain

Stop the pain

Show some class

Think about how you would feel

If the shoe were on the other foot

Class is…

Knowing the needs of others

And when they are to proud to ask for help

But helping them any wayImage


Changes in the Wind My Friend©

Copyright 2014

By Felina Silver Robinson

No longer will you get away with

All that you’ve done

Everyone is watching you

You have no say in where you might be going

The hand you passed the ball with

The hand that held me tight

Close in the dead of night

It’s the same hand that sent me crying

For fear of dying

When you threatened to keep on trying

Until someday when I wasn’t looking

You would come undone

And finish what you started

Well my friend

I just thought you just might want to know

That change is in the wind

Now the shoe will be on the other foot

You’ll be under the scope for all to see

So all that you’ve done will no longer be a secret

Everyone will know what you’ve done and l

Will be sitting in wait to pass judgement on you

Change is in the wind my friend

I’d like to see you quiver,

I’d even like to see you cry

Just so I know you are human

And have real feelings

Just like the rest of us

May you now learn how to treat me better

May you come to know true love

May you learn to give without having to take

May you learn how to both ask as well as give forgiveness

May you see the changes in the wind

And open your arms and embrace it

Copyright 2014

Changes in the Wind My Friend©

Felli


Cymbeline, ACT IV, SCENE I. Wales: near the cave of Belarius.

Enter CLOTEN

CLOTEN
I am near to the place where they should meet, if
Pisanio have mapped it truly. How fit his garments
serve me! Why should his mistress, who was made by
him that made the tailor, not be fit too? the
rather–saving reverence of the word–for ’tis said
a woman’s fitness comes by fits. Therein I must
play the workman. I dare speak it to myself–for it
is not vain-glory for a man and his glass to confer
in his own chamber–I mean, the lines of my body are
as well drawn as his; no less young, more strong,
not beneath him in fortunes, beyond him in the
advantage of the time, above him in birth, alike
conversant in general services, and more remarkable
in single oppositions: yet this imperceiverant
thing loves him in my despite. What mortality is!
Posthumus, thy head, which now is growing upon thy
shoulders, shall within this hour be off; thy
mistress enforced; thy garments cut to pieces before
thy face: and all this done, spurn her home to her
father; who may haply be a little angry for my so
rough usage; but my mother, having power of his
testiness, shall turn all into my commendations. My
horse is tied up safe: out, sword, and to a sore
purpose! Fortune, put them into my hand! This is
the very description of their meeting-place; and
the fellow dares not deceive me.

Exit

SCENE II. Before the cave of Belarius.

Enter, from the cave, BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, ARVIRAGUS, and IMOGEN
BELARIUS
[To IMOGEN] You are not well: remain here in the cave;
We’ll come to you after hunting.

ARVIRAGUS
[To IMOGEN] Brother, stay here
Are we not brothers?

IMOGEN
So man and man should be;
But clay and clay differs in dignity,
Whose dust is both alike. I am very sick.

GUIDERIUS
Go you to hunting; I’ll abide with him.

IMOGEN
So sick I am not, yet I am not well;
But not so citizen a wanton as
To seem to die ere sick: so please you, leave me;
Stick to your journal course: the breach of custom
Is breach of all. I am ill, but your being by me
Cannot amend me; society is no comfort
To one not sociable: I am not very sick,
Since I can reason of it. Pray you, trust me here:
I’ll rob none but myself; and let me die,
Stealing so poorly.

GUIDERIUS
I love thee; I have spoke it
How much the quantity, the weight as much,
As I do love my father.

BELARIUS
What! how! how!

ARVIRAGUS
If it be sin to say so, I yoke me
In my good brother’s fault: I know not why
I love this youth; and I have heard you say,
Love’s reason’s without reason: the bier at door,
And a demand who is’t shall die, I’d say
‘My father, not this youth.’

BELARIUS
[Aside] O noble strain!
O worthiness of nature! breed of greatness!
Cowards father cowards and base things sire base:
Nature hath meal and bran, contempt and grace.
I’m not their father; yet who this should be,
Doth miracle itself, loved before me.
‘Tis the ninth hour o’ the morn.

ARVIRAGUS
Brother, farewell.

IMOGEN
I wish ye sport.

ARVIRAGUS
You health. So please you, sir.

IMOGEN
[Aside] These are kind creatures. Gods, what lies
I have heard!
Our courtiers say all’s savage but at court:
Experience, O, thou disprovest report!
The imperious seas breed monsters, for the dish
Poor tributary rivers as sweet fish.
I am sick still; heart-sick. Pisanio,
I’ll now taste of thy drug.

Swallows some

GUIDERIUS
I could not stir him:
He said he was gentle, but unfortunate;
Dishonestly afflicted, but yet honest.

ARVIRAGUS
Thus did he answer me: yet said, hereafter
I might know more.

BELARIUS
To the field, to the field!
We’ll leave you for this time: go in and rest.

ARVIRAGUS
We’ll not be long away.

BELARIUS
Pray, be not sick,
For you must be our housewife.

IMOGEN
Well or ill,
I am bound to you.

BELARIUS
And shalt be ever.

Exit IMOGEN, to the cave

This youth, how’er distress’d, appears he hath had
Good ancestors.

ARVIRAGUS
How angel-like he sings!

GUIDERIUS
But his neat cookery! he cut our roots
In characters,
And sauced our broths, as Juno had been sick
And he her dieter.

ARVIRAGUS
Nobly he yokes
A smiling with a sigh, as if the sigh
Was that it was, for not being such a smile;
The smile mocking the sigh, that it would fly
From so divine a temple, to commix
With winds that sailors rail at.

GUIDERIUS
I do note
That grief and patience, rooted in him both,
Mingle their spurs together.

ARVIRAGUS
Grow, patience!
And let the stinking elder, grief, untwine
His perishing root with the increasing vine!

BELARIUS
It is great morning. Come, away!–
Who’s there?

Enter CLOTEN

CLOTEN
I cannot find those runagates; that villain
Hath mock’d me. I am faint.

BELARIUS
‘Those runagates!’
Means he not us? I partly know him: ’tis
Cloten, the son o’ the queen. I fear some ambush.
I saw him not these many years, and yet
I know ’tis he. We are held as outlaws: hence!

GUIDERIUS
He is but one: you and my brother search
What companies are near: pray you, away;
Let me alone with him.

Exeunt BELARIUS and ARVIRAGUS

CLOTEN
Soft! What are you
That fly me thus? some villain mountaineers?
I have heard of such. What slave art thou?

GUIDERIUS
A thing
More slavish did I ne’er than answering
A slave without a knock.

CLOTEN
Thou art a robber,
A law-breaker, a villain: yield thee, thief.

GUIDERIUS
To who? to thee? What art thou? Have not I
An arm as big as thine? a heart as big?
Thy words, I grant, are bigger, for I wear not
My dagger in my mouth. Say what thou art,
Why I should yield to thee?

CLOTEN
Thou villain base,
Know’st me not by my clothes?

GUIDERIUS
No, nor thy tailor, rascal,
Who is thy grandfather: he made those clothes,
Which, as it seems, make thee.

CLOTEN
Thou precious varlet,
My tailor made them not.

GUIDERIUS
Hence, then, and thank
The man that gave them thee. Thou art some fool;
I am loath to beat thee.

CLOTEN
Thou injurious thief,
Hear but my name, and tremble.

GUIDERIUS
What’s thy name?

CLOTEN
Cloten, thou villain.

GUIDERIUS
Cloten, thou double villain, be thy name,
I cannot tremble at it: were it Toad, or
Adder, Spider,
‘Twould move me sooner.

CLOTEN
To thy further fear,
Nay, to thy mere confusion, thou shalt know
I am son to the queen.

GUIDERIUS
I am sorry for ‘t; not seeming
So worthy as thy birth.

CLOTEN
Art not afeard?

GUIDERIUS
Those that I reverence those I fear, the wise:
At fools I laugh, not fear them.

CLOTEN
Die the death:
When I have slain thee with my proper hand,
I’ll follow those that even now fled hence,
And on the gates of Lud’s-town set your heads:
Yield, rustic mountaineer.

Exeunt, fighting

Re-enter BELARIUS and ARVIRAGUS

BELARIUS
No companies abroad?

ARVIRAGUS
None in the world: you did mistake him, sure.

BELARIUS
I cannot tell: long is it since I saw him,
But time hath nothing blurr’d those lines of favour
Which then he wore; the snatches in his voice,
And burst of speaking, were as his: I am absolute
‘Twas very Cloten.

ARVIRAGUS
In this place we left them:
I wish my brother make good time with him,
You say he is so fell.

BELARIUS
Being scarce made up,
I mean, to man, he had not apprehension
Of roaring terrors; for the effect of judgment
Is oft the cause of fear. But, see, thy brother.

Re-enter GUIDERIUS, with CLOTEN’S head

GUIDERIUS
This Cloten was a fool, an empty purse;
There was no money in’t: not Hercules
Could have knock’d out his brains, for he had none:
Yet I not doing this, the fool had borne
My head as I do his.

BELARIUS
What hast thou done?

GUIDERIUS
I am perfect what: cut off one Cloten’s head,
Son to the queen, after his own report;
Who call’d me traitor, mountaineer, and swore
With his own single hand he’ld take us in
Displace our heads where–thank the gods!–they grow,
And set them on Lud’s-town.

BELARIUS
We are all undone.

GUIDERIUS
Why, worthy father, what have we to lose,
But that he swore to take, our lives? The law
Protects not us: then why should we be tender
To let an arrogant piece of flesh threat us,
Play judge and executioner all himself,
For we do fear the law? What company
Discover you abroad?

BELARIUS
No single soul
Can we set eye on; but in all safe reason
He must have some attendants. Though his humour
Was nothing but mutation, ay, and that
From one bad thing to worse; not frenzy, not
Absolute madness could so far have raved
To bring him here alone; although perhaps
It may be heard at court that such as we
Cave here, hunt here, are outlaws, and in time
May make some stronger head; the which he hearing–
As it is like him–might break out, and swear
He’ld fetch us in; yet is’t not probable
To come alone, either he so undertaking,
Or they so suffering: then on good ground we fear,
If we do fear this body hath a tail
More perilous than the head.

ARVIRAGUS
Let ordinance
Come as the gods foresay it: howsoe’er,
My brother hath done well.

BELARIUS
I had no mind
To hunt this day: the boy Fidele’s sickness
Did make my way long forth.

GUIDERIUS
With his own sword,
Which he did wave against my throat, I have ta’en
His head from him: I’ll throw’t into the creek
Behind our rock; and let it to the sea,
And tell the fishes he’s the queen’s son, Cloten:
That’s all I reck.

Exit

BELARIUS
I fear ’twill be revenged:
Would, Polydote, thou hadst not done’t! though valour
Becomes thee well enough.

ARVIRAGUS
Would I had done’t
So the revenge alone pursued me! Polydore,
I love thee brotherly, but envy much
Thou hast robb’d me of this deed: I would revenges,
That possible strength might meet, would seek us through
And put us to our answer.

BELARIUS
Well, ’tis done:
We’ll hunt no more to-day, nor seek for danger
Where there’s no profit. I prithee, to our rock;
You and Fidele play the cooks: I’ll stay
Till hasty Polydote return, and bring him
To dinner presently.

ARVIRAGUS
Poor sick Fidele!
I’ll weringly to him: to gain his colour
I’ld let a parish of such Clotens’ blood,
And praise myself for charity.

Exit

BELARIUS
O thou goddess,
Thou divine Nature, how thyself thou blazon’st
In these two princely boys! They are as gentle
As zephyrs blowing below the violet,
Not wagging his sweet head; and yet as rough,
Their royal blood enchafed, as the rudest wind,
That by the top doth take the mountain pine,
And make him stoop to the vale. ‘Tis wonder
That an invisible instinct should frame them
To royalty unlearn’d, honour untaught,
Civility not seen from other, valour
That wildly grows in them, but yields a crop
As if it had been sow’d. Yet still it’s strange
What Cloten’s being here to us portends,
Or what his death will bring us.

Re-enter GUIDERIUS

GUIDERIUS
Where’s my brother?
I have sent Cloten’s clotpoll down the stream,
In embassy to his mother: his body’s hostage
For his return.

Solemn music

BELARIUS
My ingenious instrument!
Hark, Polydore, it sounds! But what occasion
Hath Cadwal now to give it motion? Hark!

GUIDERIUS
Is he at home?

BELARIUS
He went hence even now.

GUIDERIUS
What does he mean? since death of my dear’st mother
it did not speak before. All solemn things
Should answer solemn accidents. The matter?
Triumphs for nothing and lamenting toys
Is jollity for apes and grief for boys.
Is Cadwal mad?

BELARIUS
Look, here he comes,
And brings the dire occasion in his arms
Of what we blame him for.

Re-enter ARVIRAGUS, with IMOGEN, as dead, bearing her in his arms

ARVIRAGUS
The bird is dead
That we have made so much on. I had rather
Have skipp’d from sixteen years of age to sixty,
To have turn’d my leaping-time into a crutch,
Than have seen this.

GUIDERIUS
O sweetest, fairest lily!
My brother wears thee not the one half so well
As when thou grew’st thyself.

BELARIUS
O melancholy!
Who ever yet could sound thy bottom? find
The ooze, to show what coast thy sluggish crare
Might easiliest harbour in? Thou blessed thing!
Jove knows what man thou mightst have made; but I,
Thou diedst, a most rare boy, of melancholy.
How found you him?

ARVIRAGUS
Stark, as you see:
Thus smiling, as some fly hid tickled slumber,
Not as death’s dart, being laugh’d at; his
right cheek
Reposing on a cushion.

GUIDERIUS
Where?

ARVIRAGUS
O’ the floor;
His arms thus leagued: I thought he slept, and put
My clouted brogues from off my feet, whose rudeness
Answer’d my steps too loud.

GUIDERIUS
Why, he but sleeps:
If he be gone, he’ll make his grave a bed;
With female fairies will his tomb be haunted,
And worms will not come to thee.

ARVIRAGUS
With fairest flowers
Whilst summer lasts and I live here, Fidele,
I’ll sweeten thy sad grave: thou shalt not lack
The flower that’s like thy face, pale primrose, nor
The azured harebell, like thy veins, no, nor
The leaf of eglantine, whom not to slander,
Out-sweeten’d not thy breath: the ruddock would,
With charitable bill,–O bill, sore-shaming
Those rich-left heirs that let their fathers lie
Without a monument!–bring thee all this;
Yea, and furr’d moss besides, when flowers are none,
To winter-ground thy corse.

GUIDERIUS
Prithee, have done;
And do not play in wench-like words with that
Which is so serious. Let us bury him,
And not protract with admiration what
Is now due debt. To the grave!

ARVIRAGUS
Say, where shall’s lay him?

GUIDERIUS
By good Euriphile, our mother.

ARVIRAGUS
Be’t so:
And let us, Polydore, though now our voices
Have got the mannish crack, sing him to the ground,
As once our mother; use like note and words,
Save that Euriphile must be Fidele.

GUIDERIUS
Cadwal,
I cannot sing: I’ll weep, and word it with thee;
For notes of sorrow out of tune are worse
Than priests and fanes that lie.

ARVIRAGUS
We’ll speak it, then.

BELARIUS
Great griefs, I see, medicine the less; for Cloten
Is quite forgot. He was a queen’s son, boys;
And though he came our enemy, remember
He was paid for that: though mean and
mighty, rotting
Together, have one dust, yet reverence,
That angel of the world, doth make distinction
Of place ‘tween high and low. Our foe was princely
And though you took his life, as being our foe,
Yet bury him as a prince.

GUIDERIUS
Pray You, fetch him hither.
Thersites’ body is as good as Ajax’,
When neither are alive.

ARVIRAGUS
If you’ll go fetch him,
We’ll say our song the whilst. Brother, begin.

Exit BELARIUS

GUIDERIUS
Nay, Cadwal, we must lay his head to the east;
My father hath a reason for’t.

ARVIRAGUS
‘Tis true.

GUIDERIUS
Come on then, and remove him.

ARVIRAGUS
So. Begin.

SONG

GUIDERIUS
Fear no more the heat o’ the sun,
Nor the furious winter’s rages;
Thou thy worldly task hast done,
Home art gone, and ta’en thy wages:
Golden lads and girls all must,
As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.

ARVIRAGUS
Fear no more the frown o’ the great;
Thou art past the tyrant’s stroke;
Care no more to clothe and eat;
To thee the reed is as the oak:
The sceptre, learning, physic, must
All follow this, and come to dust.

GUIDERIUS
Fear no more the lightning flash,

ARVIRAGUS
Nor the all-dreaded thunder-stone;

GUIDERIUS
Fear not slander, censure rash;

ARVIRAGUS
Thou hast finish’d joy and moan:

GUIDERIUS ARVIRAGUS
All lovers young, all lovers must
Consign to thee, and come to dust.

GUIDERIUS
No exorciser harm thee!

ARVIRAGUS
Nor no witchcraft charm thee!

GUIDERIUS
Ghost unlaid forbear thee!

ARVIRAGUS
Nothing ill come near thee!

GUIDERIUS ARVIRAGUS
Quiet consummation have;
And renowned be thy grave!

Re-enter BELARIUS, with the body of CLOTEN

GUIDERIUS
We have done our obsequies: come, lay him down.

BELARIUS
Here’s a few flowers; but ’bout midnight, more:
The herbs that have on them cold dew o’ the night
Are strewings fitt’st for graves. Upon their faces.
You were as flowers, now wither’d: even so
These herblets shall, which we upon you strew.
Come on, away: apart upon our knees.
The ground that gave them first has them again:
Their pleasures here are past, so is their pain.

Exeunt BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, and ARVIRAGUS

IMOGEN
[Awaking] Yes, sir, to Milford-Haven; which is
the way?–
I thank you.–By yond bush?–Pray, how far thither?
‘Ods pittikins! can it be six mile yet?–
I have gone all night. ‘Faith, I’ll lie down and sleep.
But, soft! no bedfellow!–O god s and goddesses!

Seeing the body of CLOTEN

These flowers are like the pleasures of the world;
This bloody man, the care on’t. I hope I dream;
For so I thought I was a cave-keeper,
And cook to honest creatures: but ’tis not so;
‘Twas but a bolt of nothing, shot at nothing,
Which the brain makes of fumes: our very eyes
Are sometimes like our judgments, blind. Good faith,
I tremble stiff with fear: but if there be
Yet left in heaven as small a drop of pity
As a wren’s eye, fear’d gods, a part of it!
The dream’s here still: even when I wake, it is
Without me, as within me; not imagined, felt.
A headless man! The garments of Posthumus!
I know the shape of’s leg: this is his hand;
His foot Mercurial; his Martial thigh;
The brawns of Hercules: but his Jovial face
Murder in heaven?–How!–‘Tis gone. Pisanio,
All curses madded Hecuba gave the Greeks,
And mine to boot, be darted on thee! Thou,
Conspired with that irregulous devil, Cloten,
Hast here cut off my lord. To write and read
Be henceforth treacherous! Damn’d Pisanio
Hath with his forged letters,–damn’d Pisanio–
From this most bravest vessel of the world
Struck the main-top! O Posthumus! alas,
Where is thy head? where’s that? Ay me!
where’s that?
Pisanio might have kill’d thee at the heart,
And left this head on. How should this be? Pisanio?
‘Tis he and Cloten: malice and lucre in them
Have laid this woe here. O, ’tis pregnant, pregnant!
The drug he gave me, which he said was precious
And cordial to me, have I not found it
Murderous to the senses? That confirms it home:
This is Pisanio’s deed, and Cloten’s: O!
Give colour to my pale cheek with thy blood,
That we the horrider may seem to those
Which chance to find us: O, my lord, my lord!

Falls on the body

Enter LUCIUS, a Captain and other Officers, and a Soothsayer

Captain
To them the legions garrison’d in Gailia,
After your will, have cross’d the sea, attending
You here at Milford-Haven with your ships:
They are in readiness.

CAIUS LUCIUS
But what from Rome?

Captain
The senate hath stirr’d up the confiners
And gentlemen of Italy, most willing spirits,
That promise noble service: and they come
Under the conduct of bold Iachimo,
Syenna’s brother.

CAIUS LUCIUS
When expect you them?

Captain
With the next benefit o’ the wind.

CAIUS LUCIUS
This forwardness
Makes our hopes fair. Command our present numbers
Be muster’d; bid the captains look to’t. Now, sir,
What have you dream’d of late of this war’s purpose?

Soothsayer
Last night the very gods show’d me a vision–
I fast and pray’d for their intelligence–thus:
I saw Jove’s bird, the Roman eagle, wing’d
From the spongy south to this part of the west,
There vanish’d in the sunbeams: which portends–
Unless my sins abuse my divination–
Success to the Roman host.

CAIUS LUCIUS
Dream often so,
And never false. Soft, ho! what trunk is here
Without his top? The ruin speaks that sometime
It was a worthy building. How! a page!
Or dead, or sleeping on him? But dead rather;
For nature doth abhor to make his bed
With the defunct, or sleep upon the dead.
Let’s see the boy’s face.

Captain
He’s alive, my lord.

CAIUS LUCIUS
He’ll then instruct us of this body. Young one,
Inform us of thy fortunes, for it seems
They crave to be demanded. Who is this
Thou makest thy bloody pillow? Or who was he
That, otherwise than noble nature did,
Hath alter’d that good picture? What’s thy interest
In this sad wreck? How came it? Who is it?
What art thou?

IMOGEN
I am nothing: or if not,
Nothing to be were better. This was my master,
A very valiant Briton and a good,
That here by mountaineers lies slain. Alas!
There is no more such masters: I may wander
From east to occident, cry out for service,
Try many, all good, serve truly, never
Find such another master.

CAIUS LUCIUS
‘Lack, good youth!
Thou movest no less with thy complaining than
Thy master in bleeding: say his name, good friend.

IMOGEN
Richard du Champ.

Aside

If I do lie and do
No harm by it, though the gods hear, I hope
They’ll pardon it.–Say you, sir?

CAIUS LUCIUS
Thy name?

IMOGEN
Fidele, sir.

CAIUS LUCIUS
Thou dost approve thyself the very same:
Thy name well fits thy faith, thy faith thy name.
Wilt take thy chance with me? I will not say
Thou shalt be so well master’d, but, be sure,
No less beloved. The Roman emperor’s letters,
Sent by a consul to me, should not sooner
Than thine own worth prefer thee: go with me.

IMOGEN
I’ll follow, sir. But first, an’t please the gods,
I’ll hide my master from the flies, as deep
As these poor pickaxes can dig; and when
With wild wood-leaves and weeds I ha’ strew’d his grave,
And on it said a century of prayers,
Such as I can, twice o’er, I’ll weep and sigh;
And leaving so his service, follow you,
So please you entertain me.

CAIUS LUCIUS
Ay, good youth!
And rather father thee than master thee.
My friends,
The boy hath taught us manly duties: let us
Find out the prettiest daisied plot we can,
And make him with our pikes and partisans
A grave: come, arm him. Boy, he is preferr’d
By thee to us, and he shall be interr’d
As soldiers can. Be cheerful; wipe thine eyes
Some falls are means the happier to arise.

Exeunt

SCENE III. A room in Cymbeline’s palace.

Enter CYMBELINE, Lords, PISANIO, and Attendants
CYMBELINE
Again; and bring me word how ’tis with her.

Exit an Attendant

A fever with the absence of her son,
A madness, of which her life’s in danger. Heavens,
How deeply you at once do touch me! Imogen,
The great part of my comfort, gone; my queen
Upon a desperate bed, and in a time
When fearful wars point at me; her son gone,
So needful for this present: it strikes me, past
The hope of comfort. But for thee, fellow,
Who needs must know of her departure and
Dost seem so ignorant, we’ll enforce it from thee
By a sharp torture.

PISANIO
Sir, my life is yours;
I humbly set it at your will; but, for my mistress,
I nothing know where she remains, why gone,
Nor when she purposes return. Beseech your highness,
Hold me your loyal servant.

First Lord
Good my liege,
The day that she was missing he was here:
I dare be bound he’s true and shall perform
All parts of his subjection loyally. For Cloten,
There wants no diligence in seeking him,
And will, no doubt, be found.

CYMBELINE
The time is troublesome.

To PISANIO

We’ll slip you for a season; but our jealousy
Does yet depend.

First Lord
So please your majesty,
The Roman legions, all from Gallia drawn,
Are landed on your coast, with a supply
Of Roman gentlemen, by the senate sent.

CYMBELINE
Now for the counsel of my son and queen!
I am amazed with matter.

First Lord
Good my liege,
Your preparation can affront no less
Than what you hear of: come more, for more
you’re ready:
The want is but to put those powers in motion
That long to move.

CYMBELINE
I thank you. Let’s withdraw;
And meet the time as it seeks us. We fear not
What can from Italy annoy us; but
We grieve at chances here. Away!

Exeunt all but PISANIO

PISANIO
I heard no letter from my master since
I wrote him Imogen was slain: ’tis strange:
Nor hear I from my mistress who did promise
To yield me often tidings: neither know I
What is betid to Cloten; but remain
Perplex’d in all. The heavens still must work.
Wherein I am false I am honest; not true, to be true.
These present wars shall find I love my country,
Even to the note o’ the king, or I’ll fall in them.
All other doubts, by time let them be clear’d:
Fortune brings in some boats that are not steer’d.

Exit

SCENE IV. Wales: before the cave of Belarius.

Enter BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, and ARVIRAGUS.
GUIDERIUS
The noise is round about us.

BELARIUS
Let us from it.

ARVIRAGUS
What pleasure, sir, find we in life, to lock it
From action and adventure?

GUIDERIUS
Nay, what hope
Have we in hiding us? This way, the Romans
Must or for Britons slay us, or receive us
For barbarous and unnatural revolts
During their use, and slay us after.

BELARIUS
Sons,
We’ll higher to the mountains; there secure us.
To the king’s party there’s no going: newness
Of Cloten’s death–we being not known, not muster’d
Among the bands–may drive us to a render
Where we have lived, and so extort from’s that
Which we have done, whose answer would be death
Drawn on with torture.

GUIDERIUS
This is, sir, a doubt
In such a time nothing becoming you,
Nor satisfying us.

ARVIRAGUS
It is not likely
That when they hear the Roman horses neigh,
Behold their quarter’d fires, have both their eyes
And ears so cloy’d importantly as now,
That they will waste their time upon our note,
To know from whence we are.

BELARIUS
O, I am known
Of many in the army: many years,
Though Cloten then but young, you see, not wore him
From my remembrance. And, besides, the king
Hath not deserved my service nor your loves;
Who find in my exile the want of breeding,
The certainty of this hard life; aye hopeless
To have the courtesy your cradle promised,
But to be still hot summer’s tamings and
The shrinking slaves of winter.

GUIDERIUS
Than be so
Better to cease to be. Pray, sir, to the army:
I and my brother are not known; yourself
So out of thought, and thereto so o’ergrown,
Cannot be question’d.

ARVIRAGUS
By this sun that shines,
I’ll thither: what thing is it that I never
Did see man die! scarce ever look’d on blood,
But that of coward hares, hot goats, and venison!
Never bestrid a horse, save one that had
A rider like myself, who ne’er wore rowel
Nor iron on his heel! I am ashamed
To look upon the holy sun, to have
The benefit of his blest beams, remaining
So long a poor unknown.

GUIDERIUS
By heavens, I’ll go:
If you will bless me, sir, and give me leave,
I’ll take the better care, but if you will not,
The hazard therefore due fall on me by
The hands of Romans!

ARVIRAGUS
So say I amen.

BELARIUS
No reason I, since of your lives you set
So slight a valuation, should reserve
My crack’d one to more care. Have with you, boys!
If in your country wars you chance to die,
That is my bed too, lads, an there I’ll lie:
Lead, lead.

Aside

The time seems long; their blood
thinks scorn,
Till it fly out and show them princes born.

Exeunt

Please join me again on 02/14/16 for more fun with Shakespeare’s Cymbeline