Sunday, 24 April 2016

Elizabeth Barrett Browning: Sonnets from the Portuguese 14: If thou must love me, let it be for nought

If thou must love me, let it be for nought 
Except for love's sake only. Do not say 
I love her for her smile ... her look ... her way 
Of speaking gently, ... for a trick of thought 
That falls in well with mine, and certes brought 
A sense of pleasant ease on such a day'— 
For these things in themselves, Belovèd, may 
Be changed, or change for thee,—and love, so wrought, 
May be unwrought so. Neither love me for 
Thine own dear pity's wiping my cheeks dry,— 
A creature might forget to weep, who bore 
Thy comfort long, and lose thy love thereby! 
But love me for love's sake, that evermore 
Thou may'st love on, through love's eternity.

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