from renaldo, marquis of y----------, to daphne, countess of v--------------:
my dearest friend - the delight i feel on hearing from you is sorely tempered by the distress i feel on your behalf. and on poor colin's and clovis's behalf! i recall many happy hours spent with them. please assure them, and the other swains and shepherdesses, of my most heartfelt sympathies.
p s inspired by their plight, i was moved to compose this attempt at verse in a centuries old tradition. i fear we may be entering a new dark age, in which such civilized amusements are no longer even attempted, and i lay this humble sprig upon the pyre of art and beauty.
sunset: a pastoral
see how the little bumblebee flits from flower to flower all too unsuspecting this is his final hour
before the fleecy cloud above has crossed the placid sun our industrious little friend his labors will have done
ah colin! as you pipe your tune cast your wandering eye upon your humblest companions beneath the cerulean sky
and sigh to know and sigh to sing the pitiless truth the setting sun will bring