Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895
Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895.  1895.
If I Desire
Thomas Burbidge (b. 1816)
IF I desire with pleasant songs
    To throw a merry hour away,
Comes Love unto me, and my wrongs
    In careful tale he doth display,
And asks me how I stand for singing        5
While I my helpless hands am wringing.
And then another time if I
    A noon in shady bower would pass,
Comes he with stealthy gestures sly
    And flinging down upon the grass,        10
Quoth he to me: My master dear,
Think of this noontide such a year!
And if elsewhere I lay my head
    On pillow with intent to sleep,
Lies Love beside me on the bed,        15
    And gives me ancient words to keep;
Says he: These looks, these tokens number,
May be, they ’ll help you to a slumber.
So every time when I would yield
    An hour to quiet, comes he still;        20
And hunts up every sign conceal’d
    And every outward sign of ill;
And gives me his sad face’s pleasures
For merriment’s or sleep’s or leisure’s.


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