Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Astrophel and Stella
Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
Astrophel and Stella
XXXV. What may words say, or what may words not say
Sir Philip Sidney (1554–1586)
WHAT may words say, or what may words not say;
Where truth itself must speak like flattery?
Within what bounds, can one his liking stay;
Where Nature doth with infinite agree?
  What NESTOR’s counsel can my flames allay,        5
Since REASON’s self doth blow the coal in me?
And ah! what hope that hope should once see day,
Where CUPID is sworn page to CHASTITY?
  HONOUR is honoured, that thou dost possess
Him as thy slave; and now long needy FAME        10
Doth even grow rich, naming my STELLA’s name.
  WIT learns in thee perfection to express;
Not thou by praise, but PRAISE in thee is raised.
It is a praise to praise, where thou art praised.

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