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The walles were hanged with golden aras,
Whiche treated well of the syege of Thebes.
And yet all about us depured was
The cristallyne wyndowes of great bryghtnes.
I can nothynge extende the goodlynes
Of this palays, for it is impossyble
To shewe all that unto me vysyble.
But La Belle Pucell full ryght gentylly
Dyde sytte adowne by a wyndowes syde,
And caused me also full swetely
By her to sytte at that gentyll tyde.
Whelcome! she sayd, ye shall with me abyde,
After your sorowe to lyve in joye and blysse;
You shall have that ye have deserved ywys.
Her redolente wordes of swete influence
Degouted vapoure moost aromatyke,
And made conversyon of complacence;
Her depured and her lusty rethoryke
My courage reformed, that was so lunatyke;
My sorowe defeted, and my mynde dyde modefy,
And my dolorous herte began to pacyfy.
All thus my love we gan to devyse,
For eche of other were ryght joyous.
Than at the last in a mervaylous wyse
Full sodaynly there came unto us
Lyteil Cupyde with his mother Venus,
Which was well cladde in a fayre mantyll blewe,
With golden hertes that were perst anewe.
And rounde about us she her mantyll cast,
Sayeng that she and her sone Cupyde
Wolde us conjoyne in mariage in hast;
And to lete knowe all youre courte soo wyde,
Sende you Perseveraunce before to provyde,
To warne your ladyes for to be redy,
To morowe betyme ryght well and solemply.
We answered bothe our hertes were in one,
Sayeng that we dyde ryght well agre,
For all our foes were added and gone.
Ryght gladde I was that joyfull day to se;
And than anone, with grete humylytie,
La Bell Pucell to a fayre chambre bryght,
Dyde me than brynge for to rest all nyght.
And she toke her leve, I kyst her lovely.
I wente to bedde, but I coude not slepe,
For I thought so moche upon her inwardly,
Her moost swete lokes in to my herte dyde crepe,
Percynge it through with a wounde so depe;
For Nature thought every houre a daye
Tyll to my lady I sholde my dette well paye.
OF THE GRETE MARIAGE BETWENE GRAUNDE AMOURE AND LA BELLE PUCELL.
THAN Perceveraunce, in all goodly hast,
Unto the steward called Liberalite
Gave warning for to make redy fast
Agaynst this time of great solemnitie,
That on the morow halowed should be:
She warned the cooke called Temperaunce,
And after that the ewres Observaunce.
With Pleasaunce the paynter and dame Curtesy,
The gentyll butler with the ladies all,
Eche in her ofice was prepared shortly
Agaynst this feast so much tryumphall.
And La Belle Pucell then in speciall
Was up betime in the morow gray,
Right so was I, whan I sawe the daye.
And ryght anone La Belle Pucell me sente,
Agaynst my wedding, of the satyn fyne,
Whyte as the milke, a goodly garment,
Branded with perle that clerely did shyne;
And so the mariage for to determyne
Venus me brought to a ryall chappell,
Which of fyne golde was wrought every dele.
And after that the gay and glorious
La Belle Pucell to the chappell was ledde,
In a white vesture fayre and precious,
Wyth a golden chaplet on her yalow hede;
And Lex Ecclesie did me to her wedde;
After which wedding there was a great feast,
Nothing we lacked, but had of the best.
What should I tary by longe continuaunce
Of the fest, for of my joye and pleasure
Wysdom can judge withouten variaunce,
That nought I lacked as ye may well be sure,
Payeng the swete due det of nature;
Thus with my lady was so fayre and clere,
In joy I lived full right many a yere.
O, lusty youth and yong tender herte!
The true company of my lady bryght,
God let us never from other asterte,
But all in joy to lyve both day and nyght!
Thus after sorow joy aryveth aright:
After my payne I had sporte and play;
Full lytell thought I that it should decaye.
Tyll that dame Nature naturing had made
All thinge to grow to theyr fortitude,
And nature naturing waxte retrogarde,
By strength my youth so far to exclude,
As was ever her olde consuetude ;
First to augment, and then to abate,
This is the custome of her hye estate.
HOW WHAN GRAUNDE AMOURE HAD LIVED LONGE WYTH LA
BEL PUCELL, HE WAS ARRESTED BY AEGE, THAT BROUGHT UNTO HIM POLYCY AND AVARYCE.
THUS as I lived in such pleasure gladde,
Into the chamber came full prively
A fayre olde man, and in his hand he hadde
A croked staffe; he wente full wekely:
Unto me than he came full softely,
And with his staffe he toke me on the brest,
Obey! he sayd, I must you nedes areste.
My name is Age, which have often sene
The lusty youth perysh unhappely,
Through the desert of the selfe I wene;
And evermore I do thinke inwardly,
That my dedes of you they were of great foly,
And thou thy selfe right joyous may be
To lyve so longe to be lyke to me.
Happy is they that may well overpasse
The narrow bridge over fragilite
Of his wanton youth, brytle as the glasse;
For the youth is open to all fraylte,
Redy to fall to great iniquite;
Full well is he that is brydeled fast
With fayre dame Reason tyll his youth be past.