Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Astrophel and Stella
Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
Astrophel and Stella
II. Not at the first sight, nor with a dribbed shot
Sir Philip Sidney (1554–1586)
NOT at the first sight, nor with a dribbed shot,
LOVE gave the wound, which while I breathe, will bleed:
But known worth did in mine of time proceed,
Till, by degrees, it had full conquest got.
  I saw and liked, I liked but loved not;        5
I loved, but straight did not what LOVE decreed:
At length to LOVE’s decrees, I forced, agreed;
Yet with repining at so partial lot.
  Now even that footstep of lost liberty
Is gone; and now, like slave-born Muscovite,        10
I call it praise to suffer tyranny:
  And now employ the remnant of my wit
To make me self believe that all is well;
While with a feeling skill, I paint my hell.

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