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Now while the luftful God, with fpeedy pace, Just thought to ftrain her in a strict embrace,
He fills his arms with reeds, new rifing on the place.
And while he fighs his ill fuccefs to find,
The tender canes were fhaken by the wind;
And breath'd a mournful air, unheard before;
That, much furprizing Pan, yet pleas'd him more.
Admiring this new music, Thou, he said,
Who cant not be the partner of my bed,
At least halt be the confort of my mind;
And often, often, to my lips be join'd.
He form'd the reeds, proportion'd as they are:
Unequal in their length, and wax'd with care,
They fill retain the name of his ungrateful fair.
While Hermes pip'd, and fung, and told his tale,
The keeper's winking eyes began to fail,
And drowsy flumber on the lids to creep;
Till all the watchman was at length afleep.
Then foon the God his voice and fong fuppreft;
And with his powerful rod confirm'd his rest:
Without delay his crooked falchion drew,
And at one fatal ftroke the keeper flew.
Down from the rock fell the diffever'd head,
Opening its eyes in death, and falling bled;
And mark'd the passage with a crimson trail :
Thus Argus lies in pieces, cold and pale;
And all his hundred eyes, with all their light,
Are clos'd at once, in one perpetual night.
Thefe Juno takes, that they no more may fail,
And spreads them in her peacock's gaudy tail.
Impatient to revenge her injur'd bed,
She wreaks her anger on her rival's head;
With furies frights her from her native home,
And drives her gadding round the world to roam :
Nor ceas'd her madness and her flight, before
She touch'd the limits of the Pharian fhore.
At length, arriving on the banks of Nile,
Wearied with length of ways, and worn with toil,
She laid her down: and, leaning on her knees,
Invok'd the caufe of all her miferies:
And caft her languishing regards above,
For help from heaven, and her ungrateful Jove.
She figh'd, fhe wept, fhe low'd; 'twas all the could
And with unkindness feem'd to tax the God.
Laft, with an humble prayer, fhe begg'd repofe,
Or death at leaft to finish all her woes.
Jove heard her vows, and, with a flattering look,
In her behalf to jealous Juno fpoke.
He caft his arms about her neck, and said:
Dame, reft fecure; no more thy nuptial bed
This nymph fhall violate; by Styx I fwear,
And every oath that binds the Thunderer.
The Goddess was appeas'd: and at the word
Was Io to her former fhape reftor'd.
The rugged hair began to fall away;
The fweetness of her eyes did only stay,
Though not fo large; her crooked horns decrease;
The wideness of her jaws and noftrils cease:
Her hoofs to hands return, in little space;
The five long taper fingers take their place;
And nothing of the heifer now is feen,
Befide the native whiteness of her fkin.
Erected on her feet fhe walks again,
And two the duty of the four fustain.
She tries her tongue, her filence foftly breaks,
And fears her former lowings when she speaks:
A Goddess now through all th' Egyptian state;
And ferv'd by priests, who in white linen wait.
Her fon was Epaphus, at length believ'd
The fon of Jove, and as a God receiv'd.
With facrifice ador'd, and public prayers,
He common temples with his mother shares.
Equal in years, and rival in renown
With Epaphus, the youthful Phaeton,
Like honour claims, and boafts his fire the fun.
His haughty looks, and his affuming air,
The fon of Ifis could no longer bear:
Thou tak'ft thy mother's word too far, faid he,
And haft ufurp'd thy boasted pedigree.
Go, bafe pretender to a borrow'd name!
Thus tax'd, he blush'd with anger, and with shame;
But shame reprefs'd his rage: the daunted youth
Soon feeks his mother, and enquires the truth:
Mother, faid he, this infamy was thrown
By Epaphus on you, and me your fon.
He spoke in public, told it to my face
Nor durft I vindicate the dire disgrace:
Ev'n 1, the bold, the fenfible of wrong,
Restrain'd by fhame, was forc'd to hold my tongue.
To hear an open flander, is a curse :
But not to find an answer, is a worse.