• Vol. 10
  • Chapter 05

Commensality’s No Cure for a Cardiake Passion

Once a prominent Lady known for her patronage and godlinesse yet much afflict’d by a growing sicknesse since the sudden Death of her beloved Sir hath a bounteous store of delicate meates, cool wine, and forest fruits set forth about her funerary parlour. Most liberall was this guift of love and goodnes in true commensality bestow’d upon companions and blood family, yet our Lady’s olde and stubborne dis-ease of melancholy could not be banish’d hence by faith. Days of languishment confined to an empty chamber did pass, and that banquet’s most solemn and ghost’d memory pour’d up blacke vapors to her braine, and with a heavinesse in her soule did she dwell in troublesome dreames. They spoke to her severally, in a great whispering of silences, their malicious formes portending an endlesse famine of the heart. A great-claw’d crustacean, the blacke at the back of its eyes the darknesse of unknowable seabeds. A clip’d ‘bichon maltais’, its bare hindes the hideous pinke of a stillborne childe. An Olde Worlde guenon, its foule breath a contagion of cherries & Death. And in a great liquescence of the flesh, her skin the grey-yellow of flens’d lemon, our Lady left this grand demesne a mendicant at God’s eternall gate.