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Nay, 'twas a song of SAINTE-Aulaire.
Then read me one.
If I can catch the clock-face there, 'Tis barely eight.
We've time to spare:
What shall it be,
A tale of woe, or perfidy?
Not woes, I beg. I doubt your woes:
THE BARON (reads). "Ah, Phillis! cruel Phillis!
(I heard a Shepherd say,)
Ah, Colin! foolish Colin!
"But when her Eyes she opened,
(Although the Sun it shone,) She found the Shepherd had not stirred'Because the Light was gone!'
"Ah, Cupid! wanton Cupid!
'Twas ever thus your Way: When Maids would bid you ply your Wings, You find Excuse to stay!"
Famous! He earned whate'er he got ·---
THE BARON (turning the page). I think not.-No. Unless 'tis this: My fate is far more hard than his ;In fact, your Eyes
Now, that's a breach!
If, in return,
Countess, I could your hand but earn!
I thought as much. This comes, you see,
Where vows are hung on every tree.
THE BARON (offering his arm, with a low bow). And no one dreams-of PERFIDY.
"On s'enrichit quand on dort.
SCENE.-A high stone Seat in an Alley of clipped
THE ABBÉ TIRILI.
THE ABBÉ (writing).
HIS shepherdess Dorine adored-"
What rhyme is next? Implored?—ignored?
'Twill come in time. Meanwhile, suppose
(Sleeps. By-and-by his paper falls.)
Some one before me.
M. L'ÉTOILE (approaching from the back).
(Picks up the fluttering paper.)
More "Tales," of course. One can't refuse
Verses are public, too, that fly
"CLITANDER AND DORINE."
(Three names for one. This passes all, 'Tis "furiously" classical !)
"No doubt their Purpose oft would be
Impeded that Olympic Game; Ere he could say an 'Ave' o'er, They changed him-like a Louis-d'or." ("Aves," and current coinage! O!— O shade of NICHOLAS BOILEAU !) "Bird, Beast, or River he became: With Women it was much the same. In Ovid Case to Case succeeds; But Names the Reader never reads." (That is, Monsieur the Abbé feels His quantities are out at heels!)