Lord Rochester’s Song

[CROMWELL, ACT I.]


'Hold, little blue-eyed page!'
So cried the watchers surly,
Stern to his pretty rage
And golden hair so curly--
'Methinks your satin cloak
Masks something bulky under;
I take this as no joke--
Oh, thief with stolen plunder!'

'I am of high repute,
And famed among the truthful:
This silver-handled lute
Is meet for one still youthful
Who goes to keep a tryst
With her who is his dearest.
I charge you to desist;
My cause is of the clearest.'

But guardsmen are so sharp,
Their eyes are as the lynx's:
'That's neither lute nor harp--
Your mark is not the minxes.
Your loving we dispute--
That string of steel so cruel
For music does not suit--
You go to fight a duel!'

by Victor Marie Hugo

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