Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
Young Love
By Gerald Massey (1828–1907)
ALL glorious as the Rainbow’s birth
  She came in Spring-tide’s golden hours,
When Heaven went hand-in-hand with Earth,
  And May was crown’d with buds and flowers.
The mounting devil at my heart        5
  Clomb faintlier, as my life did win
The charmèd heaven she wrought apart
  To wake its better Angel in.
With radiant mien she trod serene
  And pass’d me smiling by—        10
O, who that look’d could help but love?
  Not I, sweet soul, not I!
Her budding breasts like fragrant fruit
  Of love were ripening to be press’d:
Her voice that shook my heart’s red root        15
  Might not have broken a Babe’s rest,—
More liquid than the running brooks,
  More vernal than the voice of Spring,
When Nightingales are in their nooks,
  And all the leafy thickets ring.        20
The love she coyly hid at heart
  Was shyly conscious in her eye;
O, who that look’d could help but love?
  Not I, sweet soul, not I!

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