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English Poetry II: From Collins to Fitzgerald.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

617. Sonnets from the Portuguese


OH, yes! they love through all this world of ours!

I will not gainsay love, called love forsooth.

I have heard love talked in my early youth,

And since, not so long back but that the flowers

Then gathered, smell still. Mussulmans and Giaours

Throw kerchiefs at a smile, and have no ruth

For any weeping. Polypheme’s white tooth

Slips on the nut if, after frequent showers,

The shell is over-smooth,—and not so much

Will turn the thing called love, aside to hate,

Or else to oblivion. But thou art not such

A lover, my Belovèd! thou canst wait

Through sorrow and sickness, to bring souls to touch,

And think it soon when others cry “Too late.”