The School Bag

‘Pan’s Syrinx was a girl indeed’

John Lyly

Pan’s Syrinx was a girl indeed,
Though now she’s turned into a reed;
From that dear reed Pan’s pipe does come,
A pipe that strikes Apollo dumb;
Nor flute, nor lute, nor gittern can
So chant it as the pipe of Pan:
Cross-gartered swains and dairy girls,
With faces smug and round as pearls,                    smooth
When Pan’s shrill pipe begins to play,
With dancing wear out night and day:
The bagpipe’s drone his hum lays by
When Pan sounds up his minstrelsy;
His minstrelsy! oh, base! this quill —
Which at my mouth with wind I fill —
Puts me in mind, though her I miss,
That still my Syrinx lips I kiss.