62 The Fabillis
Quhilk to zour stomok is contagious.
Vnhailsum meit is of ane sarie mous,
And that namelie vntill ane strang lyoun,
Vont till be fed with gentill vennesoun.
My lyfe is lytill worth, my deith is les.
Yit and I leif, I may peradventure
Supple zour hienes beand in distres,
For oft is sene, ane man off small stature,
Reskewit hes ane lord off hie honour,
Keipit that wes in poynt to be ouerthrawin.
Throw misfortoun sic cace may be zour awin.
Quhen this wes said, the lyoun his language
Paissit, and thocht according to ressoun.
And gart mercie his cruell ire asswage,
And to the mous grantit remissioun.
Oppinnit his pow, and scho on kneis fell doun,
And baith hir handis vnto the heuin vpheild,
Cryand, almichty God mot zow forzeild.
Quhen scho wes gone, the lyoun held to hunt,
For he had nocht, bot leuit on his pray
And slew baith tayme and wyld, as he wes wont,
And in the cuntrie maid ane grit deray.
Till at the last, the pepill fand the way,
This cruell lyoun how that thay mycht tak.
Off hempyn cordis strang nettis couth thay mak.
And in ane rod, quhair he wes wont to ryn,
Off Esope 63
With raipis rude fra tre to tre it band.
Syne kest ane range on raw the wod within,
With hornis blast, and kennettis fast calland.
The lyoun fled, and throw the ron rynnand,
Fell in the net, and hankit fute and heid,
For all his strenth he couth mak na remeid.
Welterand about with hiddeous rummissing,
Quhyle to, quhyle fra, quhill he mycht succour get.
Bot all in vane, it vailzeit him na thing.
The mair he flang, the faster wes he knet,
The raipis rude wes sa about him plet,
On euerilk syde, that succour saw he nane,
Bot styll lyand, thus murnand maid his mane.
O lamit lyoun liggand heir sa law,
Quhair is the mycht off thy magnyfycence?
Off quhome all brutall beist in eird stude aw,
And dred to luke vpon thy excellence.
But hoip, or help, but succour, or defence,
In bandis strang heir man I ly allace
Till I be slane, I se nane vther grace.
Thair is na wy that will my harmis wreik,
Nor creature do confort to my croun.
Quha sall me bute? Quha sall my bandis breik?
Quha sall me put fra pane off this presoun?
Be he had maid this lamentatioun,
Throw auenture, the lytill mous come neir,