SONNETS FROM THE PORTUGUESE

SONNET XI

And therefore if to love can be desert,
I am not all unworthy.  Cheeks as pale
As these you see, and trembling knees that fail
To bear the burden of a heavy heart,
This weary minstrel-life that once was girt
To climb Aornus, and can scarce avail
To pipe now 'gainst the woodland nightingale
A melancholy music! . . . why advert
To these things?  O Beloved, it is plain
I am not of thy worth nor for thy place:
And yet because I love thee, I obtain
From that same love this vindicating grace,
To live on still in love and yet in vain, . . .
To bless thee, yet renounce thee to thy face.

 


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