After so long a race as I have run
Through Faery land, which those six books compile,
give leave to rest me being halfe fordonne,
and gather to my selfe new breath awhile.
Then as a steed refreshed after toyle,
Out of my prison I will breake anew:
and stoutly will that second worke assoyle,
with strong endevour and attention dew.
Till then give leave to me in pleasant mew,
to sport my muse and sing my loves sweet praise:
the contemplation of whose heavenly hew,
my spirit to an higher pitch will rayse.
But let her prayses yet be low and meane,
fit for the handmayd of the Faery Queene.