O, will you eat
No grapes, my royal fox? yes, but you will
My noble grapes, and if my royal fox
Could reach them: I have seen a medicine
That's able to breathe life into a stone,
Quicken a rock, and make you dance canary
With spritely fire and motion; whose simple touch
Is powerful to araise King Pipin, nay,
To give great Charlemain a pen in his hand
And write to her a love-line.
What 'her' is that?
Why, doctor 'she': my lord, there's one arriv'd,
If you will see her, — now, by my faith and honour,
If seriously I may convey my thoughts
In this my light deliverance, I have spoke
With one that in her sex, her years, profession,
Wisdom, and constancy, hath amaz'd me more
Than I dare blame my weakness: will you see her, —
For that is her demand, — and know her business?
That done, laugh well at me.
Now, good Lafeu,
Bring in the admiration; that we with the
May spend our wonder too, or take off thine
By wondering how thou took'st it.
Nay, I'll fit you,
And not be all day neither.
Thus he his special nothing ever prologues.
[Re-enter LAFEU with HELENA.]
Nay, come your ways.
This haste hath wings indeed.
Nay, come your ways;
This is his majesty: say your mind to him.
A traitor you do look like; but such traitors
His majesty seldom fears: I am Cressid's uncle,
That dare leave two together: fare you well.
Now, fair one, does your business follow us?
Ay, my good lord. Gerard de Narbon was
My father; in what he did profess, well found.
I knew him.
The rather will I spare my praises towards him.
Knowing him is enough. On his bed of death
Many receipts he gave me; chiefly one,
Which, as the dearest issue of his practice,
And of his old experience the only darling,
He bade me store up as a triple eye,
Safer than mine own two, more dear: I have so:
And, hearing your high majesty is touch'd
With that malignant cause wherein the honour
Of my dear father's gift stands chief in power,
I come to tender it, and my appliance,
With all bound humbleness.
We thank you, maiden:
But may not be so credulous of cure, —
When our most learned doctors leave us, and
The congregated college have concluded
That labouring art can never ransom nature
From her inaidable estate, — I say we must not
So stain our judgment, or corrupt our hope,
To prostitute our past-cure malady
To empirics; or to dissever so
Our great self and our credit, to esteem
A senseless help, when help past sense we deem.
My duty, then, shall pay me for my pains:
I will no more enforce mine office on you;
Humbly entreating from your royal thoughts
A modest one to bear me back again.
I cannot give thee less, to be call'd grateful.
Thou thought'st to help me; and such thanks I give
As one near death to those that wish him live:
But what at full I know, thou know'st no part;
I knowing all my peril, thou no art.
What I can do can do no hurt to try,
Since you set up your rest 'gainst remedy.
He that of greatest works is finisher
Oft does them by the weakest minister:
So holy writ in babes hath judgment shown,
When judges have been babes. Great floods have flown
From simple sources; and great seas have dried
When miracles have by the greatest been denied.
Oft expectation fails, and most oft there
Where most it promises; and oft it hits
Where hope is coldest, and despair most fits.
I must not hear thee: fare thee well, kind maid;
Thy pains, not used, must by thyself be paid:
Proffers, not took, reap thanks for their reward.
Inspired merit so by breath is barred:
It is not so with Him that all things knows,
As 'tis with us that square our guess by shows:
But most it is presumption in us when
The help of heaven we count the act of men.
Dear sir, to my endeavours give consent:
Of heaven, not me, make an experiment.
I am not an impostor, that proclaim
Myself against the level of mine aim;
But know I think, and think I know most sure,
My art is not past power nor you past cure.