Verse > Anthologies > T. R. Smith, ed. > Poetica Erotica: A Collection of Rare and Curious Amatory Verse
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T. R. Smith, comp.  Poetica Erotica: Rare and Curious Amatory Verse.  1921–22.
 
To Chloe
By Horace (Quintus Horatius Flaccus) (65–8 B.C.)
 
(Ode XXIII. Book I; translated by Sir Theodore Martin, 1881)

NAY, hear me, dearest Chloe, pray!
  You shun me like a timid fawn,
That seeks its mother all the day
  By forest brake and upland lawn,
Of every passing breeze afraid,        5
And leaf that twitters in the glade.
 
Let but the wind with sudden rush
  The whispers of the wood awake,
Or lizard green disturb the hush,
  Quick-darting through the grassy brake,        10
The foolish frightened thing will start,
With trembling knees and beating heart.
 
But I am neither lion fell,
  Nor tiger grim to work you woe;
I love you, sweet one, much too well,        15
  Then cling not to your mother so,
But to a lover’s tender arms
Confide your ripe and rosy charms.
 
 
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