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The Tretis of the Tua Mariit Wemen and the Wedo

Apon the Midsummer Evin, mirriest of nichtis,
I muvit furth allane in meid as midnicht wes past
Besyd ane gudlie grein garth full of gay flouris,
Hegeit of ane huge hicht with hawthorne treis
Quhairon ane bird on ane bransche so birst out hir notis
That never ane blythfullar bird was on the beuche hard.
Quhat throw the sugarat sound of hir sang glaid
And throw the savour sanative of the sueit flouris,
I drew in derne to the dyk to dirkin efter mirthis.
The dew donkit the daill and dynnit the feulis.
I hard under ane holyn hevinlie grein hewit
Ane hie speiche at my hand with hautand wourdis.
With that in haist to the hege so hard I inthrang
That I was heildit with hawthorne and with heynd leveis.
Throw pykis of the plet thorne I presandlie luikit
Gif ony persoun wald approche within that plesand garding.

I saw thre gay ladeis sit in ane grein arbeir
All grathit into garlandis of fresche gudlie flouris.
So glitterit as the gold wer thair glorius gilt tressis
Quhill all the gressis did gleme of the glaid hewis.
Kemmit war thair clier hair and curiouslie sched
Attour thair schulderis doun schyre schyning full bricht
With curches cassin thair abone of kirsp cleir and thin.
Thair mantillis grein war as the gres that grew in May sessoun,
Fetrit with thair quhyt fingaris about thair fair sydis.
Of ferlifull fyne favour war thair faceis meik,
All full of flurist fairheid as flouris in June –
Quhyt, seimlie, and soft as the sweit lillies
Now upspred upon spray as new spynist rose,
Arrayit ryallie about with mony riche wardour
That Nature full nobillie annamalit with flouris,
Of alkin hewis under hevin that ony heynd knew,
Fragrant, all full of fresche odour fynest of smell.
Ane cumlie tabil coverit wes befoir tha clier ladeis
With ryalle cowpis apon rawis full of ryche wynis.
And of thir fair wlonkes tua weddit war with lordis,
Ane was ane wedow, iwis, wantoun of laitis.
And as thai talk at the tabill of mony taill sindry,
Thay wauchtit at the wicht wyne and waris out wourdis,
And syn thai spak more spedelie and sparit no matiris.

“Bewrie,” said the wedo, “ye woddit wemen ying,
Quhat mirth ye fand in maryage sen ye war menis wyffis.
Reveill gif ye rewit that rakles conditioun,
Or gif that ever ye luffit leyd upone lyf mair
Nor thame that ye your fayth hes festinit forever,
Or gif ye think, had ye chois, that ye wald cheis better.
Think ye it nocht ane blist band that bindis so fast
That none undo it a deill may bot the deith ane?”

Than spak ane lusty belyf with lustie effeiris:
“It that ye call the blist band that bindis so fast
Is bair of blis and bailfull and greit barrat wirkis.
Ye speir, had I fre chois, gif I wald cheis bettir –
Chenyeis ay ar to eschew and changeis ar sueit.
Sic cursit chance till eschew, had I my chois anis,
Out of the cheinyeis of ane churle I chaip suld forevir.
God, gif matrimony wer made to mell for ane yeir!
It war bot merrens to be mair bot gif our myndis pleisit.
It is agane the law of luf, of kynd, and of nature
Togidder hartis to strene that stryveis with uther.
Birdis hes ane better law na bernis be meikill,
That ilk yeir, with new joy, joyis ane maik,
And fangis thame ane fresche feyr, unfulyeit and constant,
And lattis thair fulyeit feiris flie quhair thai pleis.
Cryst, gif sic ane consuetude war in this kith haldin,
Than weill war us wemen that evir we war born!
We suld have feiris as fresche to fang quhen us likit,
And gif all larbaris thair leveis quhen thai lak curage.
Myself suld be full semlie in silkis arrayit,
Gymp, jolie, and gent, richt joyus and gent.
I suld at fairis be found new faceis to se,
At playis and at preichingis and pilgrimages greit,
To schaw my renone royaly quhair preis was of folk,
To manifest my makdome to multitude of pepill
And blaw my bewtie on breid quhair bernis war mony
That I micht cheis and be chosin and change quhen me lykit.
Than suld I waill ane full weill our all the wyd realme
That suld my womanheid weild the lang winter nicht,
And quhen I gottin had ane grome, ganest of uther,
Yaip and ying, in the yok ane yeir for to draw,
Fra I had preveit his pitht the first plesand moneth,
Than suld I cast me to keik in kirk and in markat
And all the cuntrй about, kyngis court and uther,
Quhair I ane galland micht get aganis the nixt yeir
For to perfurneis furth the werk quhen failyeit the tother –
A forky fure, ay furthwart, and forsy in draucht,
Nother febill nor fant nor fulyeit in labour,
Bot als fresche of his forme as flouris in May.
For all the fruit suld I fang, thocht he the flour burgeoun.

“I have ane wallidrag, ane worme, ane auld wobat carle,
A waistit wolroun na worth bot wourdis to clatter,
Ane bumbart, ane dronbee, ane bag full of flewme,
Ane scabbit skarth, ane scorpioun, ane scutarde behind.
To se him scart his awin skyn grit scunner I think.
Quhen kissis me that carybald, than kyndillis all my sorow.
As birs of ane brym bair his berd is als stif,
Bot soft and soupill as the silk is his sary lume.
He may weill to the syn assent, bot sakles is his deidis.
With gor his tua grym ene ar gladderit all about
And gorgeit lyk tua gutaris that war with glar stoppit.
Bot quhen that glowrand gaist grippis me about,
Than think I hiddowus Mahowne hes me in armes.
Thair ma na sanyne me save fra that auld Sathane,
For thocht I croce me all cleine fra the croun doun,
He wil my corse all beclip and clap to his breist.
Quhen schaiffyn is that ald schaik with a scharp rasour,
He schowis on me his schevill mouth and schendis my lippis,
And with his hard hurcheone scyn sa heklis he my chekis
That as a glemand gleyd glowis my chaftis.
I schrenk for the scharp stound bot schout dar I nought
For schore of that auld schrew, schame him betide.
The luf blenkis of that bogill fra his blerde ene
As Belzebub had on me blent, abasit my spreit.
And quhen the smy on me smyrkis with his smake smolet
He fepillis like a farcy aver that flyrit on a gillot.
Quhen that the sound of his saw sinkis in my eris,
Than ay renewis my noy or he be neir cumand.
Quhen I heir nemmyt his name, than mak I nyne crocis
To keip me fra the cummerans of that carll mangit
That full of eldnyng is and anger and all evill thewis.
I dar nought luke to my luf for that lene gib.
He is sa full of jelusy and engyne fals,
Ever ymagynyng in mynd materis of evill,
Compasand and castand cacis a thousand
How he sall tak me with a trawe at trist of aneothir.
I dar nought keik to the knaip that the cop fillis
For eldnyng of that ald schrew that ever on evill thynkis,
For he is waistit and worne fra Venus werkis
And may nought beit worght a bene in bed of my mystirs.
He trowis that young folk I yerne yeild, for he gane is,
Bot I may yuke all this yer or his yerd help.
Ay quhen that caribald carll wald clym on my wambe,
Than am I dangerus and daine and dour of my will.
Yit leit I nevir that larbar my leggis ga betuene
To fyle my flesche na fummyll me without a fee gret;
And thoght his pen purly me payis in bed,
His purse pays richely in recompense efter.
For or he clym on my corse, that carybald forlane,
I have condition of a curche of kersp all ther fynest,
A goun of engranyt claight right gaily furrit,
A ring with a ryall stane or other riche jowell,
Or rest of his rousty raid, thoght he wer rede wod.
For all the buddis of Johne Blunt, quhen he abone clymis,
Me think the baid deir aboucht, sa bawch ar his werkis.
And thus I sell him solace thoght I it sour think.
Fra sic a syre God yow saif, my sueit sisteris deir!”

Quhen that the semely had said hir sentence to end,
Than all thai leuch apon loft with latis full mery
And raucht the cop round about full of riche wynis,
And ralyeit lang or thai wald rest with ryatus speche.

The wedo to the tothir wlonk warpit thir wordis:
“Now, fair sister, fallis yow but fenying to tell,
Sen man ferst with matrimony yow menskit in kirk,
How haif ye farne – be your faith, confese us the treuth! –
That band to blise or to ban, quhilk yow best thinkis;
Or how ye like lif to leid into lell spousage?
And syne myself ye exem on the samyn wise,
And I sall say furth the suth, dissymyland no word.”

The plesand said, “I protest, the treuth gif I schaw,
That of your toungis ye be traist.” The tothir twa grantit.
With that sprang up hir spreit be a span hechar.
“To speik,” quod scho, “I sall nought spar, ther is no spy neir.
I sall a ragment reveil fra rute of my hert,
A roust that is sa rankild quhill risis my stomok.
Now sall the byle all out brist that beild has so lang.
For it to beir on my breist wes berdin our hevy.
I sall the venome devoid with a vent large
And me assuage of the swalme that suellit wes gret.

“My husband wes a hur maister, the hugeast in erd.
Tharfor I hait him with my hert, sa help me our Lord.
He is a young man ryght yaip, bot nought in youth flouris,
For he is fadit full far and feblit of strenth.
He wes as flurising fresche within this few yeris,
Bot he is falyeid full far and fulyeid in labour.
He has bene lychour so lang quhill lost is his natur,
His lume is waxit larbar and lyis into swoune.
Wes never sugeorne wer set na on that snaill tyrit,
For efter sevin oulkis rest it will nought rap anys.
He has bene waistit apon wemen or he me wif chesit,
And in adultrй in my tyme I haif him tane oft.
And yit he is als brankand with bonet on syde,
And blenkand to the brichtest that in the burght duellis,
Alse curtly of his clething and kemmyng of his haris
As he that is mare valyeand in Venus chalmer.
He semis to be sumthing worth, that syphyr in bour,
He lukis as he wald luffit be, thoght he be litill of valour.
He dois as dotit dog that damys on all bussis
And liftis his leg apon loft thoght he nought list pische.
He has a luke without lust and lif without curage.
He has a forme without force and fesson but vertu,
And fair wordis but effect, all fruster of dedis.
He is for ladyis in luf a right lusty schadow,
Bot into derne at the deid he sal be drup fundin.
He ralis and makes repet with ryatus wordis,
Ay rusing him of his radis and rageing in chalmer.
Bot God wait quhat I think quhen he so thra spekis
And how it settis him so syde to sege of sic materis.
Bot gif himself of sum evin myght ane say amang thaim:
Bot he nought ane is bot nane of naturis possessoris.
Scho that has ane auld man nought all is begylit –
He is at Venus werkis na war na he semys.
I wend I josit a gem and I haif geit gottin;
He had the glemyng of gold and wes bot glase fundin.
Thought men be ferse, wele I fynd, fra falye ther curage,
Thar is bot eldnyng and anger ther hertis within.
Ye speik of berdis on bewch – of blise may thai sing,
That on Sanct Valentynis day ar vacandis ilk yer.
Hed I that plesand prevelege to part quhen me likit,
To change and ay to cheise agane, than chastitй adew!
Than suld I haif a fresch feir to fang in myn armys;
To hald a freke quhill he faynt may foly be calit.
Apone sic materis I mus at mydnyght full oft
And murnys so in my mynd I murdris myselfin.
Than ly I walkand for wa and walteris about,
Wariand oft my wekit kyn that me away cast,
To sic a craudoune but curage that knyt my cler bewtй,
And ther so mony kene knyghtis this kenrik within.
Than think I on a semelyar, the suth for to tell,
Na is our syre be sic sevin; with that I syth oft.
Than he ful tenderly dois turne to me his tume person,
And with a yoldin yerd dois yolk me in armys
And sais, ‘My soverane sueit thing, quhy sleip ye no betir?
Me think ther haldis yow a hete, as ye sum harme alyt.’
Quod I, ‘My hony, hald abak and handill me nought sair,
A hache is happinnit hastely at my hert rut.’
With that I seme for to swoune thought I na swerf tak,
And thus beswik I that swane with my sueit wordis.
I cast on him a crabit e quhen cleir day is cummyn,
And lettis it is a luf blenk quhen he about glemys.
I turne it in a tender luke that I in tene warit
And him behaldis hamely with hertly smyling.

“I wald a tender peronall that myght na put thole,
That hatit men with hard geir for hurting of flesch,
Had my gud man to hir gest, for I dar God suer,
Scho suld not stert for his straik a stray breid of erd.
And syne I wald that ilk band that ye so blist call
Had bund him so to that bryght quhill his bak werkit;
And I wer in a beid broght with berne that me likit,
I trow that bird of my blis suld a bourd want.”

Onone quhen this amyable had endit hir speche,
Loud lauchand the laif allowit hir mekle.
Thir gay wiffis maid gam amang the grene leiffis,
Thai drank and did away dule under derne bewis,
Thai swapit of the sueit wyne, thai swan quhit of hewis,
Bot all the pertlyar in plane thai put out ther vocis.

Than said the weido: “Iwis, ther is no way othir.
Now tydis me for to talk, my taill it is nixt.
God my spreit now inspir and my speche quykkin,
And send me sentence to say substantious and noble,
Sa that my preching may pers your perverst hertis
And mak yow mekar to men in maneris and conditiounis.

“I schaw yow, sister, in schrift I wes a schrew ever,
Bot I wes schene in my schrowd and schew me innocent;
And thought I dour wes and dane, dispitois and bald,
I wes dissymblit suttelly in a sanctis liknes.
I semyt sober and sueit and sempill without fraud,
Bot I couth sexty dissaif that suttillar wer haldin.
Unto my lesson ye lyth and leir at me wit,
Gif you nought list be forleit with losingeris untrew.
Be constant in your governance and counterfeit gud maneris,
Thought ye be kene, inconstant, and cruell of mynd.
Thought ye as tygris be terne, be tretable in luf,
And be as turtoris in your talk, thought ye haif talis brukill.
Be dragonis baitht and dovis ay in double forme,
And quhen it nedis yow, onone note baith ther stranthis.
Be amyable with humble face as angellis apperand,
And with a terrebill tail be stangand as edderis.
Be of your luke like innocentis, thoght ye haif evill myndis.
Be courtly ay in clething and costly arrayit –
That hurtis yow nought worth a hen, yowr husband pays for all.

“Twa husbandis haif I had, thai held me baith deir.
Thought I dispytit thaim agane, thai spyt it na thing.
Ane wes a hair hogeart that hostit out flewme.
I hatit him like a hund thought I it hid prevй.
With kissing and with clapping I gert the carill fon;
Weil couth I claw his cruke bak and kemm his kewt noddill,
And with a bukky in my cheik bo on him behind,
And with a bek gang about and bler his ald e,
And with a kyind contynance kys his crynd chekis,
Into my mynd makand mokis at that mad fader,
Trovand me with trew lufe to treit him so fair.
This cought I do without dule and na dises tak,
Bot ay be mery in my mynd and myrthfull of cher.

“I had a lufsummar leid my lust for to slokyn
That couth be secrete and sure and ay saif my honour,
And sew bot at certane tymes and in sicir placis.
Ay quhen the ald did me anger with akword wordis,
Apon the galland for to goif it gladit me agane.
I had sic wit that for wo weipit I litill,
Bot leit the sueit ay the sour to gud sesone bring.
Quhen that the chuf wald me chid with girnand chaftis,
I wald him chuk, cheik and chyn, and cheris him so mekill
That his cheif chymys he had chevist to my sone,
Suppos the churll wes gane chaist or the child wes gottin.
As wis woman ay I wrought and not as wod fule,
For mar with wylis I wan na wichtnes of handis.

“Syne maryt I a merchand myghti of gudis.
He wes a man of myd eld and of mene statur,
Bot we na fallowis wer in frendschip or blud,
In fredome na furth bering, na fairnes of persoune –
Quhilk ay the fule did forget for febilnes of knawlege.
Bot I sa oft thoght him on quhill angrit his hert,
And quhilum I put furtht my voce and peddir him callit.
I wald ryght tuichandly talk be I wes tuyse maryit,
For endit wes my innocence with my ald husband.
I wes apperand to be pert within perfit eild:
Sa sais the curat of our kirk that knew me full ying.
He is our famous to be fals, that fair worthy prelot.
I sal be laith to lat him le quhill I may luke furtht.
I gert the buthman obey – ther wes no bute ellis –
He maid me ryght hie reverens fra he my rycht knew,
For, thocht I say it myself, the severance wes mekle
Betuix his bastard blude and my birth noble.
That page wes never of sic price for to presome anys
Unto my persone to be peir, had petй nought grantit.
Bot mercy into womanheid is a mekle vertu,
For never bot in a gentill hert is generit ony ruth.
I held ay grene into his mynd that I of grace tuk him,
And that he couth ken himself I curtasly him lerit.
He durst not sit anys my summondis, for or the secund charge
He wes ay redy for to ryn, so rad he wes for blame.
Bot ay my will wes the war of womanly natur:
The mair he loutit for my luf, the les of him I rakit,
And eik – this is a ferly thing – or I him faith gaif
I had sic favour to that freke and feid syne forever.
Quhen I the cure had all clene and him ourcummyn haill,
I crew abone that craudone as cok that wer victour.
Quhen I him saw subjeit and sett at myn bydding,
Than I him lichtlyit as a lowne and lathit his maneris.
Than woxe I sa unmerciable to martir him I thought,
For as a best I broddit him to all boyis laubour.
I wald haif riddin him to Rome with raip in his heid
Wer not ruffill of my renoune and rumour of pepill.
And yit hatrent I hid within my hert all,
Bot quhilis it hepit so huge quhill it behud out.
Yit tuk I nevir the wosp clene out of my wyde throte
Quhill I oucht wantit of my will or quhat I wald desir.
Bot quhen I severit had that syre of substance in erd
And gottin his biggingis to my barne and hie burrow landis,
Than with a stew stert out the stoppell of my hals
That he all stunyst throu the stound as of a stele wappin.
Than wald I efter lang first sa fane haif bene wrokin
That I to flyte wes als fers as a fell dragoun.
I had for flattering of that fule fenyeit so lang,
Mi evidentis of heritagis or thai wer all selit,
My breist that wes gret beild bowdyn wes sa huge
That neir my baret out birst or the band makin.
Bot quhen my billis and my bauchles wes all braid selit,
I wald na langar beir on bridill bot braid up my heid.
Thar myght na molet mak me moy na hald my mouth in.
I gert the renyeis rak and rif into sondir,
I maid that wif carll to werk all womenis werkis
And laid all manly materis and mensk in this eird.
Than said I to my cummaris in counsall about,
‘Se how I cabeld yone cout with a kene brydill.
The cappill that the crelis kest in the caf mydding
Sa curtasly the cart drawis and kennis na plungeing,
He is nought skeich na yit sker na scippis nought on syd.’
And thus the scorne and the scaith scapit he nothir.

“He wes no glaidsum gest for a gay lady,
Tharfor I gat him a gam that ganyt him bettir.
He wes a gret goldit man and of gudis riche;
I leit him be my lumbart to lous me all misteris,
And he wes fane for to fang fra me that fair office
And thoght my favoris to fynd throw his feill giftis.
He grathit me in a gay silk and gudly arrayis,
In gownis of engranyt claight and gret goldin chenyeis,
In ringis ryally set with riche ruby stonis,
Quhill hely raise my renoune amang the rude peple.
Bot I full craftely did keip thai courtly wedis
Quhill efter dede of that drupe that docht nought in chalmir.
Thought he of all my clathis maid cost and expense,
Aneothir sall the worschip haif that weildis me eftir.
And thoght I likit him bot litill, yit for luf of othris
I wald me prunya plesandly in precius wedis
That luffaris myght apon me luke and ying lusty gallandis
That I held more in dayntй and derer be ful mekill
Ne him that dressit me so dink – full dotit wes his heyd!
Quhen he wes heryit out of hand to hie up my honoris,
And payntit me as pako, proudest of fedderis,
I him miskennyt, be Crist, and cukkald him maid.
I him forleit as a lad and lathlyit him mekle –
I thoght myself a papingay and him a plukit herle.
All thus enforsit he his fa and fortifyit in strenth
And maid a stalwart staff to strik himselfe doune.

“Bot of ane bowrd into bed I sall yow breif yit:
Quhen he ane hal year wes hanyt and him behuffit rage,
And I wes laith to be loppin with sic a lob avoir,
Alse lang as he wes on loft I lukit on him never
Na leit never enter in my thoght that he my thing persit;
Bot ay in mynd aneothir man ymagynit that I haid,
Or ellis had I never mery bene at that myrthles raid.
Quhen I that grome geldit had of gudis and of natur,
Me thoght him gracelese on to goif, sa me God help.
Quhen he had warit all on me his welth and his substance,
Me thoght his wit wes all went away with the laif.
And so I did him dispise; I spittit quhen I saw
That superspendit evill spreit spulyeit of all vertu.
For weill ye wait, wiffis, that he that wantis riches
And valyeandnes in Venus play is ful vile haldin.
Full fruster is his fresch array and fairnes of persoune,
All is bot frutlese his effeir and falyeis at the upwith.
I buskit up my barnis like baronis sonnies
And maid bot fulis of the fry of his first wif.
I banyst fra my boundis his brethir ilkane,
His frendis as my fais I heid at feid evir.
Be this ye beleif may, I luffit nought himself,
For never I likit a leid that langit till his blude.
And yit thir wismen, thai wait that all wiffis evill
Ar kend with ther conditionis and knawin with the samin.

“Deid is now that dyvour and dollin in erd.
With him deit all my dule and my drery thoghtis.
Now done is my dolly nyght, my day is upsprungin.
Adew, dolour, adew, my dayntй now begynis.
Now am I a wedow, iwise, and weill am at ese.
I weip as I wer woful, bot wel is me for ever.
I busk as I wer bailfull, bot blith is my hert.
My mouth it makis murnyng and my mynd lauchis.
My clokis thai ar caerfull in colour of sabill,
Bot courtly and ryght curyus my corse is ther undir.
I drup with a ded luke in my dule habit,
As with manis daill I had done for dayis of my lif.

“Quhen that I go to the kirk cled in cair weid,
As foxe in a lambis fleise fenye I my cheir.
Than lay I furght my bright buke on breid on my kne
With mony lusty letter ellummynit with gold,
And drawis my clok forthwart our my face quhit
That I may spy unaspyit a space me beside.
Full oft I blenk by my buke and blynis of devotion
To se quhat berne is best brand or bredest in schulderis
Or forgeit is maist forcely to furnyse a bancat
In Venus chalmer valyeandly withoutin vane ruse.
And as the new mone all pale oppressit with change
Kythis quhilis her cleir face throw cluddis of sable,
So keik I throw my clokis and castis kynd lukis
To knychtis and to cleirkis and cortly personis.
Quhen frendis of my husbandis behaldis me on fer,
I haif a watter spunge for wa within my wyde clokis,
Than wring I it full wylely and wetis my chekis.
With that watteris myn ene and welteris doune teris.
Than say thai all that sittis about, ‘Se ye nought, allace,
Yone lustlese led, so lelely scho luffit hir husband.
Yone is a petй to enprent in a princis hert,
That sic a perle of plesance suld yone pane dre.’
I sane me as I war ane sanct and semys ane angell,
At langage of lichory I leit as I war crabit.
I sith without sair hert or seiknes in body,
According to my sable weid I mon haif sad maneris,
Or thai will se all the suth – for certis we wemen,
We set us all for the syght to syle men of treuth.
We dule for na evill deid, sa it be derne haldin.

“Wise wemen has wayis and wonderfull gydingis
With gret engyne to bejaip ther jolyus husbandis,
And quyetly with sic craft convoyis our materis
That under Crist no creatur kennis of our doingis.
Bot folk a cury may miscuke that knawlege wantis
And has na colouris for to cover ther awne kindly fautis,
As dois thir damysellis for derne dotit lufe
That dogonis haldis in daintй and delis with thaim so lang
Quhill al the cuntrй knaw ther kyndnes and faith.
Faith has a fair name bot falsheid faris beittir –
Fy on hir that can nought feyne her fame for to saif!
Yit am I wise in sic werk and wes all my tyme.
Thoght I want wit in warldlynes I wylis haif in luf,
As ony happy woman has that is of hie blude.
Hutit be the halok lase a hunder yeir of eild!
I have ane secrete servand, rycht sobir of his toung,
That me supportis of sic nedis quhen I a syne mak.
Thoght he be sympill to the sicht, he has a tong sickir;
Full mony semelyar sege wer service dois mak.
Thoght I haif cair under cloke the cleir day quhill nyght,
Yit haif I solace under serk quhill the sone ryse –
Yit am I haldin a haly wif our all the haill schyre.
I am sa peteouse to the pur quhen ther person is mony.
In passing of pilgrymage I pride me full mekle –
Mair for the prese of peple na ony pardon wynyng.

“Bot yit me think the best bourd quhen baronis and knychtis
And othir bachilleris blith, blumyng in youth,
And all my luffaris lele my luging persewis,
And fyllis me wyne wantonly with weilfair and joy.
Sum rownis and sum ralyeis and sum redis ballatis,
Sum raiffis furght rudly with riatus speche,
Sum plenis and sum prayis, sum prasis mi bewtй,
Sum kissis me, sum clappis me, sum kyndnes me proferis,
Sum kerffis to me curtasli, sum me the cop giffis,
Sum stalwardly steppis ben with a stout curage
And a stif standand thing staiffis in mi neiff,
And mony blenkis ben our that but full fer sittis,
That mai for the thik thrang nought thrif as thai wald.
Bot with my fair calling I comfort thaim all:
For he that sittis me nixt, I nip on his finger;
I serf him on the tothir syde on the samin fasson;
And he that behind me sittis I hard on him lene;
And him befor, with my fut fast on his I stramp;
And to the bernis far, but sueit blenkis I cast.
To every man in speciall speke I sum wordis,
So wisly and so womanly quhill warmys ther hertis.
Thar is no liffand leid so law of degrй
That sall me luf unluffit, I am so loik hertit.
And gif his lust so be lent into my lyre quhit
That he be lost or with me lak, his lif sall not danger.
I am so mercifull in mynd and menys all wichtis,
My sely saull sal be saif quhen Sabot all jugis.
Ladyis, leir thir lessonis and be no lassis fundin.
This is the legeand of my lif, thought Latyne it be nane.”

Quhen endit had hir ornat speche this eloquent wedow,
Lowd thai lewch all the laif and loffit hir mekle,
And said thai suld exampill tak of her soverane teching
And wirk efter hir wordis, that woman wes so prudent.
Than culit thai ther mouthis with confortable drinkis
And carpit full cummerlik with cop going round.

Thus draif thai our that deir nyght with danceis full noble
Quhill that the day did up daw and dew donkit flouris.
The morow myld wes and meik the mavis did sing,
And all remuffit the myst and the meid smellit.
Silver schouris doune schuke as the schene cristall,
And berdis shoutit in schaw with ther schill notis.
The goldin glitterand gleme so gladit ther hertis,
Thai maid a glorius gle amang the grene bewis.
The soft sowch of the swyr and soune of the stremys,
The sueit savour of the sward and singing of foulis
Myght confort ony creatur of the kyn of Adam
And kindill agane his curage thoght it wer cald sloknyt.
Than rais thir ryall rosis in ther riche wedis
And rakit hame to ther rest throw the rise blumys.
And I all prevйly past to a plesand arber,
And with my pen did report ther pastance most mery.

Ye auditoris most honorable that eris has gevin
Onto this uncouth aventur quhilk airly me happinnit,
Of thir thre wanton wiffis that I haif writtin heir,
Quhilk wald ye waill to your wif gif ye suld wed one?

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The Tretis of the Tua Mariit Wemen and the Wedo - WILLIAM DUNBAR