Verse > Oscar Wilde > Poems

Oscar Wilde (1854–1900).  Poems.  1881.

56. Quia Multum amavi

DEAR Heart I think the young impassioned priest 
  When first he takes from out the hidden shrine 
His God imprisoned in the Eucharist, 
  And eats the bread, and drinks the dreadful wine, 
Feels not such awful wonder as I felt         5
  When first my smitten eyes beat full on thee, 
And all night long before thy feet I knelt 
  Till thou wert wearied of Idolatry. 
Ah! had’st thou liked me less and loved me more, 
  Through all those summer days of joy and rain,  10
I had not now been sorrow’s heritor, 
  Or stood a lackey in the House of Pain. 
Yet, though remorse, youth’s white-faced seneschal 
  Tread on my heels with all his retinue, 
I am most glad I loved thee—think of all  15
  The suns that go to make one speedwell blue! 



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