Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Amoretti and Epithalamion
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Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
 
Amoretti and Epithalamion
Sonnet XLVII. Trust not the treason of those smiling looks
Edmund Spenser (1552?–1599)
 
TRUST not the treason of those smiling looks,
Until ye have their guileful trains well tried:
For they are like but unto golden hooks,
That from the foolish fish their baits do hide:
So she with flattering smiles weak hearts doth guide        5
Unto her love, and tempt to their decay;
Whom, being caught, she kills with cruel pride,
And feeds at pleasure on the wretched prey:
Yet, even whilst her bloody hands them slay,
Her eyes look lovely, and upon them smile;        10
That they take pleasure in her cruel play,
And, dying, do themselves of pain beguile.
  O mighty charm! which makes men love their bane,
  And think they die with pleasure, live with pain.
 
 
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