Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895
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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895.  1895.
 
Song
 
Aubrey Thomas De Vere (b. 1814)
 
 
    SEEK not the tree of silkiest bark
        And balmiest bud,
    To carve her name while yet ’t is dark
        Upon the wood!
    The world is full of noble tasks        5
        And wreaths hard won:
Each work demands strong hearts, strong hands,
        Till day is done.
 
    Sing not that violet-veined skin,
        That cheek’s pale roses,        10
    The lily of that form wherein
        Her soul reposes!
Forth to the fight, true man! true knight!
        The clash of arms
Shall more prevail than whisper’d tale,        15
        To win her charms.
 
    The warrior for the True, the Right,
        Fights in Love’s name;
    The love that lures thee from that fight
        Lures thee to shame:        20
That love which lifts the heart, yet leaves
        The spirit free,—
    That love, or none, is fit for one
        Man-shap’d like thee.
 

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