SCENE XVThe same. A monument.
Enter CLEOPATRA and her maids aloft, with CHARMIAN and IRAS.
O Charmian, I will never go from hence.
Be comforted, dear madam.
No, I will not:
All strange and terrible events are welcome,
But comforts we despise; our size of sorrow,
Proportion'd to our cause, must be as great
As that which makes it. Enter, below, DIOMEDES.
How now! is he dead ?
His death's upon him, but not dead.
Look out o' the other side your monument;
His guard have brought him thither. Enter, below, ANTONY, borne by the Guard.
O sun, (10)
Burn the great sphere thou movest in! darkling stand
The varying shore o' the world. O Antony,
Antony, Antony! Help, Charmian, help, Iras, help;
Help, friends below; let's draw him hither.
Not Cæsar's valor hath o'erthrown Antony,
But Antony's hath triumph'd on itself.
So it should be, that none but Antony
Should conquer Antony; but woe 'tis so!
I am dying, Egypt, dying; only
I here importune death awhile, until (20)
Of many thousand kisses the poor last
I lay upon thy lips.
I dare not, dear,—
Dear my lord, pardon,—I dare not,
Lest I be taken: not the imperious show
Of the full-fortuned Cæsar ever shall
Be brooch'd with me; if knife, drugs, serpents, have
Edge, sting, or operation, I am safe:
Your wife Octavia, with her modest eyes
And still conclusion, shall acquire no honor
Demuring upon me. But come, come, Antony,—
Help me, my women,—we must draw thee up: (31)
Assist, good friends.
O, quick, or I am gone.
Here's sport indeed! How heavy weighs my lord!
Our strength is all gone into heaviness,
That makes the weight: had I great Juno's power,
The strong-wing'd Mercury should fetch thee up,
And set thee by Jove's side. Yet come a little,—
Wishes were ever fools,—O, come, come, come; They heave Antony aloft to Cleopatra.
And welcome, welcome! die where thou hast lived;
Quicken with kissing: had my lips that power,
Thus would I wear them out. (40)
A heavy sight !
I am dying, Egypt, dying:
Give me some wine, and let me speak a little.
No, let me speak; and let me rail so high,
That the false housewife Fortune break her wheel,
Provoked by my offence.
One word, sweet queen:
Of Cæsar seek your honor, with your safety. O!
They do not go together.
Gentle, hear me:
None about Cæsar trust but Proculeius.
My resolution and my hands I'll trust; (50)
None about Cæsar.
The miserable change now at my end
Lament nor sorrow at; but please your thoughts
In feeding them with those my former fortunes
Wherein I lived, the greatest prince o' the world,
The noblest; and do now not basely die
Not cowardly put off my helmet to
My countryman,—a Roman by a Roman
Valiantly vanquish'd. Now my spirit is going;
I can no more.
Noblest of men, woo't die ? (60)
Hast thou no care of me ? shall I abide
In this dull world, which in thy absence is
No better than a sty ? O, see, my women, Antony dies.
The crown o' the earth doth melt. My lord!
O, wither'd is the garland of the war,
The soldier's pole is fall'n: young boys and girls
Are level now with men; the odds is gone,
And there is nothing left remarkable
Beneath the visiting moon. Faints.
O, quietness, lady !
She is dead too, our sovereign.
O madam, madam, madam! (70)
Peace, peace, Iras!
No more, but e'en a woman, and commanded
By such poor passion as the maid that milks
And does the meanest chares. It were for me
To throw my sceptre at the injurious gods;
To tell them that this world did equal theirs
Till they had stol'n our jewel. All's but naught;
Patience is scottish, and impatience does (80)
Become a dog that's mad: then is it sin
To rush into the secret house of death,
Ere death dare come to us ? How do you, women ?
What, what! good cheer! Why, how now, Charmian !
My noble girls! Ah, women, women, look,
Our lamp is spent, it's out! Good sirs, take heart:
We'll bury him; and then, what's brave, what's noble,
Let's do it after the high Roman fashion,
And make death proud to take us. Come, away:
This case of that huge spirit now is cold:
Ah, women, women ! come; we have no friend (91)
But resolution, and the briefest end. Exeunt; those above bearing off Antony's body.