Geoffrey Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde
Stanzas 71 through 80
["If thow hast had in loue ay yet myschaunce,
And kanst it not out of thyn herte dryue,
I that leuede yn lust and in plesaunce
With here as muche as creature on lyue,
How sholde I that foryete and that so blyue?
O where hastow ben hid so longe in muwe,
That kanst so wel and formely arguwe?
"Nay, nay, god wot, nought worth is al thi red,
ffor which, for what that euere may by-falle,
With-outen wordes mo I wol be ded.
O deth that endere art of sorwes alle,
Com now syn I so ofte after the calle;
ffor sely is that deth, soth for to seyne,
That ofte ycleped cometh and endeth peyne.
"Wel wot I, whil my lyf was in quyete,
Er thow me slowe I wolde haue yeuen hire;
But now thi comynge is to me so swete
That in this world I no thing so desire:
O deth, syn with this sorwe I am a-fyre,
Thou other do me anoon yn teris drenche,
Or with thi colde strok myn hete quenche.
"Syn that thow sleest so fele in sondry wyse
A-yens hire wil vnpreyed day and nyght,
Do me at my requeste this seruice:
Delyuere now the world, so dostow right,
Of me that am the wofulleste wyght
That euere was; for tyme is that I sterue,
Syn in this world of right nought may I serue."
This Troylus in teris gan distille,
As licour out of a lambyc ful faste;
And Pandarus gan holde his tunge stille,
And to the ground his eyen doun he caste;
But natheles, thus thought he at the laste:
"What, parde, rather than my felawe deye,
Yet shal I som-what more vn-to hym seye."
And seyde, "frend, syn thow hast swych distresse,
And syn the list myn argumentz to blame,
Why nylt thi seluen helpen don redresse,
And with thy manhod letten al this grame?
Go rauysshe here ne kanstow not for shame?
And other lat here out of towne fare,
Or hold here stille and leue thi nyce fare.]
"Artow in Troie and hast non hardymente
To take a womman which that loueth the,
And wolde hire seluen ben of thyn assente?
Now is nat this a nyce vanitee?
Ris vp anon and lat this wepyng be,
And kith thow art a man, for in this houre
I wol ben ded or she shal bleuen oure."
To this answerde hym Troilus ful softe
And seyde, "perde, leue brother deere,
Al this haue I my self ȝet thought ful ofte,
And more thyng than thow deuysest here.
But whi this thing is laft thow shalt wel here,
And whan thow me hast ȝeue an audience,
I her-after maystow telle al thi sentence.
"ffirst, syn thow woost this town hath al this werre
ffor rauysshyng of wommen so by myght,
It sholde nought be suffred me to erre,
As it stant now, ne don so gret vnright:
I sholde han also blame of euery wight,
My fadres graunt if that I so with-stoode,
Syn she is chaunged for the townes goode.
"I haue ek thought, so it were hire assent,
To axe hire at my fader of his grace;
Than thynke I this were hire accusement,
Syn wel I woot I may hire nought purchace:
ffor syn my fader in so heigh a place
As parlement hath hire eschaunge enseled,
He nyl for me his lettre be repeled.