The Consolations of Memory




(done out of Boethius by Geoffrey Chaucer)


BLESSÈD was our first age and morning-time. Then were no waies tarren, ne no cars numberen, but each followed his owne playinge-busyness to go about singly or by large interspaces, for to leden his viage after his luste and layen under clene hedge. Jangling there was not, nor the overtaking wheele, and all those now cruel clarions were full-hushed and full-still. Then nobile horses, lest they should make the chariots moveable to run by cause of this new feare, we did not press, and were apayed by sweete thankes of him that drave. There was not cursings ne adventure of death blinded bankes betweene, but good-fellowship of yoke-mates at ignorance equal, and a one pillar of dust covered all exodus . . . . But, see now how the blacke road hath strippen herself of hearte and beauty where the dumbe lampe of Tartarus winketh red, etc.