09w21:3 Shakespeare's Blog Part XVIII

by timothy. 0 Comments

May 20th
Well, there is no way out, for I must obey my lord and ring-giver. She has been leaping and cavorting and high lavoltaing these last days with the knowledge of what she sees as her entrance into the great world now coming in a trumpet-and-banner and livery-glittering barge-feast, Harry and his friends and their ladies (ah, they have learnt; I taught them; LLL was Learn Learn Learn) swan-sailing Greenwichwards with the kits soaring over in the unblemished May heavens. And so it is. Poor Will very sober-suited but she in a sort of flame-satin stepping aboard. Oh, Lord P and Sir Ned T and the Earl of K are much taken, the rose-and-cream ladies envious and shifting their best malice at this russet innocent from the land of four-footed men and women and their things cut at a strange slant. They mock her dis and dat and de udder ting, but she is brownly cool while they sweat. The lords surround her, bringing her slices of goose-breast in sharp sauce, veal-shape, a flawn on a silver dish. To H she flashes black eyes and teeth like serried snow-gums; his eye burns, drawn to, transfixed in, her brown bosom. I see his long fingers, all crusted fire, scratch at their palm. I see the two of them, in my fever, lying together, lordly silver moving in kingly measure upon queenly gold. He has not forgotten Willobie and Avisa, the Islington trick; he knows he is at libert any time to buy something with his thousand pound. Day’s end in torchlight, the rowers’ slower strokes, cob and pen and cygnets a preen or a sleep of silver, the kites no longer disfiguring the empurpled May heavens. The madrigalists sing of a silver swan, each voice married in perfection to a correspondent viol in a consort of viols. It is she has put hand in his.

(Anthony Burgess, Nothing Like The Sun, p.155-156)

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