Gateway to the Classics: Oxford Book of English Verse, Part 1 by Arthur Quiller-Couch
Oxford Book of English Verse, Part 1 by  Arthur Quiller-Couch

Robin and Makyne

Robin sat on gude green hill,

Kepand a flock of fe:

Mirry Makyn said him till

"Robin, thou rew on me:

I haif thee luvit, loud and still,

Thir yeiris twa or thre;

My dule in dern bot gif thou dill,

Doutless but dreid I de."

Robin answerit "By the Rude

Na thing of luve I knaw,

But keipis my scheip undir yon wud:

Lo, quhair they raik on raw.

Quhat has marrit thee in thy mude

Makyn, to me thou shaw;

Or quhat is luve, or to be lude?

Fain wad I leir that law."

"At luvis lair gif thou will leir

Tak thair ane A B C;

Be heynd, courtass, and fair of feir,

Wyse, hardy, and free:

So that no danger do thee deir

Quhat dule in dern thou dre;

Preiss thee with pain at all poweir

Be patient and previe."

Robin answerit hir agane,

"I wat not quhat is lufe;

But I haif mervel in certaine

Quhat makis thee this wanrufe:

The weddir is fair, and I am fain;

My scheip gois haill aboif;

And we wald pley us in this plane,

They wald us baith reproif."

"Robin, tak tent unto my tale,

And wirk all as I reid,

And thou sall haif my heart all haill,

Eik and my maiden-heid:

Sen God sendis bute for baill,

And for murnyng remeid,

In dern with thee bot gif I daill

Dowtles I am bot deid."

"Makyn, to-morn this ilka tyde

And ye will meit me heir,

Peraventure my scheip may gang besyde,

Quhyle we haif liggit full neir;

But mawgre haif I, and I byde,

Fra they begin to steir;

Quhat lyis on heart I will nocht hyd;

Makyn, then mak gude cheir."

"Robin, thou reivis me roiff and rest;

I luve bot thee allane."

"Makyn, adieu! the sone gois west,

The day is neir-hand gane."

"Robin, in dule I am so drest

That luve will be my bane."

"Ga luve, Makyne, quhair-evir thow list,

For lemman I luve nane."

"Robin, I stand in sic a styll,

I sicht and that full sair."

"Makyn, I haif been here this quhyle;

At hame God gif I wair."

"My huny, Robin, talk ane quhyll,

Gif thow will do na mair."

"Makyn, sum uthir man begyle,

For hamewart I will fair."

Robin on his wayis went

As light as leif of tre;

Makyn murnit in hir intent,

And trowd him nevir to se.

Robin brayd attour the bent:

Then Makyne cryit on hie,

"Now may thow sing, for I am schent!

Quhat alis lufe at me?"

Makyn went hame withowttin fail,

Full wery eftir cowth weip;

Then Robin in a ful fair daill

Assemblit all his scheip.

Be that sum part of Makynis aill

Out-throw his hairt cowd creip;

He fallowit hir fast thair till assaill,

And till her tuke gude keip.

"Abyd, abyd, thow fair Makyne,

A word for ony thing;

For all my luve, it sall be thyne,

Withowttin departing.

All haill thy hairt for till haif myne

Is all my cuvating;

My scheip to-morn, quhyle houris nyne,

Will neid of no keping."

"Robin, thow hes hard soung and say,

In gestis and storeis auld,

The man that will nocht quhen he may

Sall haif nocht quhen he wald.

I pray to Jesu every day,

Mot eik thair cairis cauld

That first preissis with thee to play

Be firth, forrést, or fauld."

"Makyn, the nicht is soft and dry,

The weddir is warme and fair,

And the grene woid rycht neir us by

To walk attour all quhair:

Thair ma na janglour us espy,

That is to lufe contrair;

Thairin, Makyne, baith ye and I,

Unsene we ma repair."

"Robin, that warld is all away,

And quyt brocht till ane end:

And nevir agane thereto, perfay,

Sall it be as thow wend;

For of my pane thow maid it play;

And all in vane I spend:

As thow hes done, sa sall I say,

'Murne on, I think to mend.' "

"Makyn, the howp of all my heill,

My hairt on thee is sett;

And evirmair to thee be leill

Quhill I may leif but lett;

Never to faill as utheris feill,

Quhat grace that evir I gett."

"Robin, with thee I will nocht deill;

Adieu! for thus we mett."

Makyn went hame blyth anneuche

Attour the holttis hair;

Robin murnit, and Makyne leuche;

Scho sang, he sichit sair:

And so left him baith wo and wreuch,

In dolour and in cair,

Kepand his hird under a huche

Amangis the holttis hair.

— Robert Henryson

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