ACT 2, SCENE 2: Another part of the wood.

Enter TITANIA, with her train.

TITANIA: Come, now a roundel and a fairy song;
Then, for the third part of a minute, hence;
Some to kill cankers in the musk-rose buds,
Some war with rere-mice for their leathern wings,
To make my small elves coats, and some keep back                          [5]
The clamorous owl that nightly hoots and wonders
At our quaint spirits. Sing me now asleep;
Then to your offices and let me rest.

The Fairies sing.

You spotted snakes with double tongue,
Thorny hedgehogs, be not seen;                                                          [10]
Newts and blind-worms, do no wrong,
Come not near our fairy queen.
Philomel, with melody
Sing in our sweet lullaby;
Lulla, lulla, lullaby, lulla, lulla, lullaby:                                                [15]
Never harm,
Nor spell nor charm,
Come our lovely lady nigh;
So, good night, with lullaby.
Weaving spiders, come not here                                                         [20]
Hence, you long-legg'd spinners, hence!
Beetles black, approach not near;
Worm nor snail, do no offence.
Philomel, with melody, &c.

A Fairy: Hence, away! now all is well:                                                              [25]
One aloof stand sentinel.

[Exeunt Fairies. TITANIA sleeps.]

Enter OBERON and squeezes the flower on TITANIA's eyelids.

OBERON: What thou seest when thou dost wake,
Do it for thy true-love take,
Love and languish for his sake:
Be it ounce, or cat, or bear,                                                                       [30]
Pard, or boar with bristled hair,
In thy eye that shall appear
When thou wakest, it is thy dear:
Wake when some vile thing is near.
[Exit.]

Enter LYSANDER and HERMIA.

LYSANDER: Fair love, you faint with wandering in the wood;                 [35]
And to speak troth, I have forgot our way:
We'll rest us, Hermia, if you think it good,
And tarry for the comfort of the day.

HERMIA: Be it so, Lysander: find you out a bed;
For I upon this bank will rest my head.                                                [40]

LYSANDER: One turf shall serve as pillow for us both;
One heart, one bed, two bosoms and one troth.

HERMIA: Nay, good Lysander; for my sake, my dear,
Lie further off yet, do not lie so near.

LYSANDER: O, take the sense, sweet, of my innocence!                              [45]
Love takes the meaning in love's conference.
I mean, that my heart unto yours is knit
So that but one heart we can make of it;
Two bosoms interchained with an oath;
So then two bosoms and a single troth.                                                [50]
Then by your side no bed-room me deny;
For lying so, Hermia, I do not lie.

HERMIA: Lysander riddles very prettily:
Now much beshrew my manners and my pride,
If Hermia meant to say Lysander lied.                                                   [55]
But, gentle friend, for love and courtesy
Lie further off; in human modesty,
Such separation as may well be said
Becomes a virtuous bachelor and a maid,
So far be distant; and, good night, sweet friend:                                  [60]
Thy love ne'er alter till thy sweet life end!

LYSANDER: Amen, amen, to that fair prayer, say I;
And then end life when I end loyalty!
Here is my bed: sleep give thee all his rest!

HERMIA: With half that wish the wisher's eyes be press'd!                        [65]

[They sleep.]

Enter PUCK.

PUCK: Through the forest have I gone.
But Athenian found I none,
On whose eyes I might approve
This flower's force in stirring love.
Night and silence.--Who is here?                                                         [70]
Weeds of Athens he doth wear:
This is he, my master said,
Despised the Athenian maid;
And here the maiden, sleeping sound,
On the dank and dirty ground.                                                               [75]
Pretty soul! she durst not lie
Near this lack-love, this kill-courtesy.
Churl, upon thy eyes I throw
All the power this charm doth owe.
When thou wakest, let love forbid                                                        [80]
Sleep his seat on thy eyelid:
So awake when I am gone;
For I must now to Oberon.
[Exit.]

Enter DEMETRIUS and HELENA, running.

HELENA: Stay, though thou kill me, sweet Demetrius.

DEMETRIUS: I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt me thus.                 [85]

HELENA: O, wilt thou darkling leave me? do not so.

DEMETRIUS: Stay, on thy peril: I alone will go.
[Exit.]

HELENA: O, I am out of breath in this fond chase!
The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace.
Happy is Hermia, wheresoe'er she lies;                                                [90]
For she hath blessed and attractive eyes.
How came her eyes so bright? Not with salt tears:
If so, my eyes are oftener wash'd than hers.
No, no, I am as ugly as a bear;
For beasts that meet me run away for fear:                                          [95]
Therefore no marvel though Demetrius
Do, as a monster, fly my presence thus.
What wicked and dissembling glass of mine
Made me compare with Hermia's sphery eyne?
But who is here? Lysander! on the ground!                                      [100]
Dead? or asleep? I see no blood, no wound.
Lysander if you live, good sir, awake.

LYSANDER: [Awaking] And run through fire I will for thy sweet sake.
Transparent Helena! Nature shows art,
That through thy bosom makes me see thy heart.                             [105]
Where is Demetrius? O, how fit a word
Is that vile name to perish on my sword!

HELENA: Do not say so, Lysander; say not so
What though he love your Hermia? Lord, what though?
Yet Hermia still loves you: then be content.                                       [110]

LYSANDER: Content with Hermia! No; I do repent
The tedious minutes I with her have spent.
Not Hermia but Helena I love:
Who will not change a raven for a dove?
The will of man is by his reason sway'd;                                              [115]
And reason says you are the worthier maid.
Things growing are not ripe until their season
So I, being young, till now ripe not to reason;
And touching now the point of human skill,
Reason becomes the marshal to my will                                              [120]
And leads me to your eyes, where I o'erlook
Love's stories written in love's richest book.

HELENA: Wherefore was I to this keen mockery born?
When at your hands did I deserve this scorn?
Is't not enough, is't not enough, young man,                                     [125]
That I did never, no, nor never can,
Deserve a sweet look from Demetrius' eye,
But you must flout my insufficiency?
Good troth, you do me wrong, good sooth, you do,
In such disdainful manner me to woo.                                                [130]
But fare you well: perforce I must confess
I thought you lord of more true gentleness.
O, that a lady, of one man refused.
Should of another therefore be abused!
[Exit.]

LYSANDER: She sees not Hermia. Hermia, sleep thou there:                   [135]
And never mayst thou come Lysander near!
For as a surfeit of the sweetest things
The deepest loathing to the stomach brings,
Or as the heresies that men do leave
Are hated most of those they did deceive,                                           [140]
So thou, my surfeit and my heresy,
Of all be hated, but the most of me!
And, all my powers, address your love and might
To honour Helen and to be her knight!
[Exit.]

HERMIA: [Awaking] Help me, Lysander, help me! do thy best               [145]
To pluck this crawling serpent from my breast!
Ay me, for pity! what a dream was here!
Lysander, look how I do quake with fear:
Methought a serpent eat my heart away,
And you sat smiling at his cruel prey.                                                   [150]
Lysander! what, removed? Lysander! lord!
What, out of hearing? gone? no sound, no word?
Alack, where are you? speak, an if you hear;
Speak, of all loves! I swoon almost with fear.
No? then I well perceive you are not nigh                                         [155]
Either death or you I'll find immediately.
[Exit.]


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