Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. II. Love
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Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume II. Love.  1904.
 
II. Love’s Nature
My Choice
William Browne (c. 1590–c. 1645)
 
SHALL I tell you whom I love?
  Hearken then awhile to me;
And if such a woman move
  As I now shall versify,
Be assured ’t is she or none,        5
That I love, and love alone.
 
Nature did her so much right
  As she scorns the help of art.
In as many virtues dight
  As e’er yet embraced a heart.        10
So much good so truly tried,
Some for less were deified.
 
Wit she hath, without desire
  To make known how much she hath;
And her anger flames no higher        15
  Than may fitly sweeten wrath.
Full of pity as may be,
  Though perhaps not so to me.
 
Reason masters every sense,
  And her virtues grace her birth;        20
Lovely as all excellence,
  Modest in her most of mirth.
Likelihood enough to prove
Only worth could kindle love.
 
Such she is; and if you know        25
  Such a one as I have sung;
Be she brown, or fair, or so
  That she be but somewhat young;
Be assured ’t is she, or none,
That I love, and love alone.        30
 
 
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