Tuesday, May 3

communication between couples

(There are several men and two ladies in the room.)

[The lady speaks in Welsh.]

MORTIMER. I understand thy looks, that pretty Welsh
Which thou pourest down from these swelling heavens
I am too perfect in, and but for shame
In such a parley should I answer thee.

[The lady speaks again in Welsh.]

I understand thy kisses, and thou mine,
And that's a feeling disputation,
But I will never be a truant, love,
Till I have learnt thy language, for thy tongue
Makes Welsh as sweet as ditties highly penn'd.
Sung by a fair queen in a summer's bow'r
With ravishing division to her lute.

GLENDOWER. Nay, if you melt, then will she run mad.

[The lady speaks again in Welsh.]

MORTIMER. O, I am ignorance itself in this!

GLENDOWER. She bids you on the wanton rushes lay you down,
And rest your gentle head upon her lap,
And she will sing the song that pleaseth you,
And on your eyelids crown the god of sleep,
Charming your blood with pleasing heaviness,
Making such difference 'twixt wake and sleep
As is the difference betwixt day and night,
The hour before the heavenly-harness'd team
Begins his golden progress in the east.

MORTIMER. With all my heart I'll sit and hear her sing,
By that time will our book I think be drawn.

GLENDOWER. Do so, and those musicians that shall play to you
Hang in the air a thousand leagues from hence,
And straight they shall be here: sit, and attend.

HOTSPUR. Come, Kate, thou art perfect in lying down.
Come, quick, quick, that I may lay my head in thy lap.

LADY PERCY. Go, ye giddy goose.

[The music plays.]

HOTSPUR. Now I perceive the devil understands Welsh,
And 'tis no marvel he is so humorous,
By'r lady, he is a good musician.

LADY PERCY. Then should you be nothing but musical,
For you are altogether govern'd by humors.
Lie still, ye thief, and hear the lady sing in Welsh.

HOTSPUR. I had rather hear Lady my brach howl in Irish.

LADY PERCY. Wouldst thou have thy head broken?


LADY PERCY. Then be still.

-- William Shakespeare The First Part of King Henry the Fourth