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Alfred H. Miles, ed. The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century. 1907.

By Time Flies. V. “Piteous my rhyme is”

Christina G. Rossetti (1830–1894)

April 20

PITEOUS my rhyme is,

What while I muse of love and pain,

Of love misspent, of love in vain,

Of love that is not loved again:

And is this all then?

As long as time is

Love loveth. Time is but a span,

The dalliance space of dying man:

And is this all immortals can?

The gain were small then.

Love loves for ever,

And finds a sort of joy in pain,

And gives with nought to take again,

And loves too well to end in vain:

Is the gain small then?

Love laughs at “never,”

Outlives our life, exceeds the span

Appointed to mere mortal man:

That which love is and does and can,

Is all in all then.