Verse > Anthologies > Hunt and Lee, eds. > The Book of the Sonnet
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Hunt and Lee, comps.  The Book of the Sonnet.  1867.
 
XII. “Yet, love, mere love, is beautiful indeed”
By Mrs. Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806–1861)
 
(From Sonnets from the Portuguese)

YET, love, mere love, is beautiful indeed,
And worthy of acceptation. Fire is bright,
Let temple burn or flax! An equal light
Leaps in the flame from cedar-plant or weed.
And love is fire: and when I say at need,        5
I love thee—Mark!—I love thee!—in thy sight
I stand transfigured, glorified aright,
With conscience of the new rays that proceed
Out of my face toward thine. There’s nothing low
In love, when love the lowest. Meanest creatures        10
Who love God, God accepts while loving so.
And what I feel, across the inferior features
Of what I am, doth flash itself, and show
How that great work of Love enhances Nature’s.
 
 
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