John Gower, Confessio Amantis 3.768-817 (Phebus and the Crow)
Genius, the vassal of Love, confesses the young lover, Amans, and tells him tale after tale to instruct him in the practical and moral wisdom necessary to love. Here, in a sequence of tales including Teiresias' unwise judgment of a quarrel between Jupiter and Juno, Genius warns Amans to keep his big mouth shut.
3.768: Mi Sone, be thou war ther by,
3.769: And hold thi tunge stille clos:
3.770: For who that hath his word desclos
3.771: Er that he wite what he mene,
3.772: He is fulofte nyh his tene
3.773: And lest ful many time grace,
3.774: Wher that he wolde his thonk pourchace.
3.775: And over this, my Sone diere,
3.776: Of othre men, if thou miht hiere
3.777: In privete what thei have wroght,
3.778: Hold conseil and descoevere it noght,
3.779: For Cheste can no conseil hele,
3.780: Or be it wo or be it wele:
3.781: And tak a tale into thi mynde,
3.782: The which of olde ensample I finde.
3.783: Phebus, which makth the daies lihte,
3.784: A love he hadde, which tho hihte
3.785: Cornide, whom aboven alle
3.786: He pleseth: bot what schal befalle
3.787: Of love ther is noman knoweth,
3.788: Bot as fortune hire happes throweth.
3.789: So it befell upon a chaunce,
3.790: A yong kniht tok hire aqueintance
3.791: And hadde of hire al that he wolde:
3.792: Bot a fals bridd, which sche hath holde
3.793: And kept in chambre of pure yowthe,
3.794: Discoevereth all that evere he cowthe.
3.795: This briddes name was as tho
3.796: Corvus, the which was thanne also
3.797: Welmore whyt than eny Swan,
3.798: And he that schrewe al that he can
3.799: Of his ladi to Phebus seide;
3.800: And he for wraththe his swerd outbreide,
3.801: With which Cornide anon he slowh.
3.802: Bot after him was wo ynowh,
3.803: And tok a full gret repentance,
3.804: Wherof in tokne and remembrance
3.805: Of hem whiche usen wicke speche,
3.806: Upon this bridd he tok this wreche,
3.807: That ther he was snow whyt tofore,
3.808: Evere afterward colblak therfore
3.809: He was transformed, as it scheweth,
3.810: And many a man yit him beschreweth,
3.811: And clepen him into this day
3.812: A Raven, be whom yit men mai
3.813: Take evidence, whan he crieth,
3.814: That som mishapp it signefieth.
3.815: Be war therfore and sei the beste,
3.816: If thou wolt be thiself in reste,
3.817: Mi goode Sone, as I the rede.