Verse > Anthologies > T. R. Smith, ed. > Poetica Erotica: A Collection of Rare and Curious Amatory Verse
T. R. Smith, comp.  Poetica Erotica: Rare and Curious Amatory Verse.  1921–22.
Two Sonnets
By Arthur Symons (1865–1945)
(From Amoris Victima, 1897)

ALL that I know of love I learnt of you,
And I know all that lover ever knew,
Since, passionately loving to be loved,
The subtlety of your wise body moved
My senses to a curiosity,        5
And your wise heart adorned itself for me.
Did you not teach me how to love you, how
To win you, how to suffer for you now,
Since you have made, as long as life endures,
My very nerves, my very senses, yours?        10
I suffer for you now with that same skill
Of self-consuming ecstasy, whose thrill
(May Death some day the thought of it remove!)
You gathered from the very hands of Love.
I CANNOT do without you: you have been
Too long my only slave, my only queen.
I cannot do without you: you have grown
Part of my flesh, and nearer than my own.
I need you! Speak, be silent, frown or smile,
Only be with me for a little while,        20
And let your face and hands and hair be kissed,
And let me feel your fingers on my wrist.
I cannot do without you. Other men
Love, bid good-bye, and turn to love again;
I only know I want you, only you,        25
Only because I want you. If you knew
How much I want you! If you knew how much
I hunger, should I hunger, for your touch?

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