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ELEGIA 5

Ad amicam corruptam


No love is so dere (quiverd Cupid flie)
That my chiefe wish should be so oft to die.
Minding thy fault, with death I wish to revill,
Alas a wench is a perpetuall evill.
No intercepted lines thy deedes display,
No gifts given secretly thy crime bewray.
O would my proofes as vaine might be withstood,
Aye me poore soule, why is my cause so good.
He's happy, that his love dares boldly credit,
To whom his wench can say, I never did it.
He's cruell, and too much his griefe doth favour
That seekes the conquest by her loose behaviour.
Poore wretch I sawe when thou didst thinke I slumbred,
Not drunke, your faults in the spilt wine I numbred.
I sawe your nodding eye-browes much to speake,
Even from your cheekes parte of a voice did breake.
Not silent were thine eyes, the boord with wine
Was scribled, and thy fingers writ a line.
I knew your speech (what do not lovers see?)
And words that seem'd for certaine markes to be.
Now many guests were gone, the feast being done,
The youthfull sort to divers pastimes runne.
I sawe you then unlawfull kisses joyne,
(Such with my tongue it likes me to purloyne).
None such the sister gives her brother grave,
But such kinde wenches let their lovers have.
Phoebus gave not Diana such tis thought,
But Venus often to her Mars such brought.
What doest, I cryed, transportst thou my delight?
My lordly hands ile throwe upon my right.
Such blisse is onely common to us two,
In this sweete good, why hath a third to do?
This, and what grife inforc'd me say I say'd,
A scarlet blush her guilty face arayed.
Even such as by Aurora hath the skie,
Or maides that their betrothed husbands spie.
Such as a rose mixt with a lilly breedes,
Or when the Moone travailes with charmed steedes.
Or such, as least long yeares should turne the die,
Arackne staynes Assyrian ivory.
To these, or some of these like was her colour,
By chaunce her beauty never shined fuller.
She viewed the earth: the earth to viewe, beseem'd her.
She looked sad: sad, comely I esteem'd her.
Even kembed as they were, her lockes to rend,
And scratch her faire soft cheekes I did intend.
Seeing her face, mine upreard armes discended,
With her owne armor was my wench defended.
I that ere-while was fierce, now humbly sue,
Least with worse kisses she should me indue.
She laught, and kissed so sweetely as might make
Wrath-kindled Jove away his thunder shake.
I grieve least others should such good perceive,
And wish hereby them all unknowne to leave.
Also much better were they then I tell,
And ever seemed as some new sweete befell.
Tis ill they pleas'd so much, for in my lips,
Lay her whole tongue hid, mine in hers she dips.
This grieves me not, no joyned kisses spent,
Bewaile I onely, though I them lament.
No where can they be taught but in the bed,
I know no maister of so great hire sped.

load focus English (various, 1855)
load focus Latin (R. Ehwald, 1907)
hide References (2 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • E. T. Merrill, Commentary on Catullus, 68b
  • Cross-references to this page (1):
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