Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
Faint Heart
By William James Linton (1812–1897)
FAINT heart wins not lady fair:
Victory smiles on those who dare,
There is but one way to woo—
Think thy Mistress willing too!
Leave her never chance to choose,        5
Hold her powerless to refuse.
If she answer thee with No,
Wilt thou bow and let her go?—
When, most like, her ‘No’ is meant
But to make more sweet consent;        10
So thy suit may longer be
For so much she liketh thee.
Never heed her pretty airs!
He ’s no lover who despairs;
He ’s no warrior whom a frown        15
Drives from his beleaguer’d town;
And no hunter he who stops
Till his stricken quarry drops.
Aim as certain not to miss;
Take her as thou would’st a kiss!        20
Or ask once, and if in vain,
Ask her twice, and thrice again:
Sure of this when all is said,—
They lose most who are afraid.

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