William Shakespeare: The Tempest

1. SCENE I. Before PROSPERO'S cell

[Enter FERDINAND, bearing a log.]

There be some sports are painful, and their labour
Delight in them sets off: some kinds of baseness
Are nobly undergone, and most poor matters
Point to rich ends. This my mean task
Would be as heavy to me as odious; but
The mistress which I serve quickens what's dead,
And makes my labours pleasures: O! she is
Ten times more gentle than her father's crabbed,
And he's compos'd of harshness. I must remove
Some thousands of these logs, and pile them up,
Upon a sore injunction: my sweet mistress
Weeps when she sees me work, and says such baseness
Had never like executor. I forget:
But these sweet thoughts do even refresh my labours,
Most busy, least when I do it.

[Enter MIRANDA: and PROSPERO behind.]

Alas! now pray you,
Work not so hard: I would the lightning had
Burnt up those logs that you are enjoin'd to pile!
Pray, set it down and rest you: when this burns,
'Twill weep for having wearied you. My father
Is hard at study; pray, now, rest yourself:
He's safe for these three hours.

O most dear mistress,
The sun will set, before I shall discharge
What I must strive to do.

If you'll sit down,
I'll bear your logs the while. Pray give me that;
I'll carry it to the pile.

No, precious creature:
I had rather crack my sinews, break my back,
Than you should such dishonour undergo,
While I sit lazy by.

It would become me
As well as it does you: and I should do it
With much more ease; for my good will is to it,
And yours it is against.

[Aside] Poor worm! thou art infected:
This visitation shows it.

You look wearily.

No, noble mistress; 'tis fresh morning with me
When you are by at night. I do beseech you--
Chiefly that I might set it in my prayers--
What is your name?

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