The Pearl/Volume 18/The Wedding Night
When John and Sue had tied the nupital bands,
Like ardent lovers, join'd their hearts and hands,
Hymen prepared his torch to bless the two
And in them centered his peculiar care.
The blissful hour arriv'd, Sue to his bed
By buxom damsels joyfully was led;
One with officious hands her stays unlac'd,
While standers-by extoll'd her lessening waist;
Her garters some with eagerness untied,
And all by turns were variously employ'd.
Susan, with bashful modesty array'd,
Like to a prudent and virtuous maid,
Now plac'd in bed, these dubious thoughts arose:
"I fear this night I'll have no repose;
To bed with man; methinks is vastly odd,
Tho' matrimony was ordain'd by God.
Oh, how my virgin frame will shake with fear,
When am'rous John in glowing hopes draws near;
If my fair front to his I shall incline,
And all my blooming charms at once resign,
He'll say I'm bold and turn his head aside,
And think he's purchas'd a lascivious bride.
To him, my parts posterior if I turn,
He'll charge me with indecency and scorn-
But here he comes:- Oh, how shall I behave,
To show myself his true and faithful slave?
A medium I'll observe, fall which way it will;
Of his fair Susan John won't take it ill,
And that I no apology may lack.
I'm e'en resolved to lie upon my back."