Verse > Anthologies > William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. > The Book of Restoration Verse
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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed.  The Book of Restoration Verse.  1910.
 
To His Mistress
By George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham (1628–1687)
 
        WHAT a dull fool was I,
        To think so gross a lie,
As that I ever was in love before!
    I have, perhaps, known one or two
        With whom I was content to be        5
At that, which they call ‘keeping company.’
    But, after all that they could do,
        I still could be with more.
Their absence never made me shed a tear;
        And I can truly swear,        10
    That, till my eyes first gazed on you,
I ne’er beheld that thing I could adore.
 
A world of things must curiously be sought,
A world of things must be together brought,
To make up charms which have the power to move,        15
    Through a discerning eye, true love.
    That is a masterpiece, above
    What only looks and shape can do;
    There must be wit, and judgment too;
    Greatness of thought, and worth, which draw        20
    From the whole world, respect and awe.
 
She that would raise a noble love, must find
Ways to beget a passion for her mind,
She must be that, which she, to be would seem;
For all true love is grounded on esteem.        25
Plainness and truth gain more a generous heart
Than all the crooked subtleties of art.
    She must be (what said I?), She must be you.
    None but yourself that miracle can do;
At least, I’m sure, thus much I plainly see,        30
None but yourself e’er did it upon me.
’Tis you alone, that can my heart subdue—
    To you alone, it always shall be true!
 
 
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