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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 6.djvu/300

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[CANTO VI.
DON JUAN.

CANTO THE SIXTH.

r. " There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which, — taken at the flood," — you know the rest,^ And most of us have found it now and then : At least we think so, though but few have guessed The moment, till too late to come again. But no doubt everything is for the best — Of which the surest sign is in the end : When things are at the worst they sometimes mend. II. There is a tide in the affairs of women, Which, taken at the flood, leads — God knows where : Those navigators must be able seamen Whose charts lay down its currents to a hair ; Not all the reveries of Jacob Behmen ^ With its strange whirls and eddies can compare : . [Two MSS. (A, B) are extant, A in Byron's handwriting, B a transcription by Mrs. Slaelley. The variants are marked respectively MS. A., uUS. B. Motto: " Thinkest thou that because thou art virtuous there shall be no more cakes and ale? Aye ! and ginger shall be hot in the mouth .oo:'— Twelfth Night, or What You Will, Shakespeare, act ii. sc. 3, lines 109-112. — MS. B,^ This motto, in an amended form, which was prefixed to the First Canto in 1833, appears on the title-page of the first edition of Cantos VI., VII., VIII., published by John Hunt in 1823.] . [See Shakespeare, Julius CcBsar, act iv. sc. 3, lines 216, 217,] . [Jacob Behmen (or Boehm) stands for "mystic." Byron twice compares him with Wordsworth (see Letters, 1899, iii. 239, 1900, iv.

238).]