Verse > Anthologies > Hunt and Lee, eds. > The Book of the Sonnet
Hunt and Lee, comps.  The Book of the Sonnet.  1867.
VI. “No gentle touches of your timid hand”
By George Henry Boker (1823–1890)
NO gentle touches of your timid hand,—
  No shuddering kisses pressed upon my lip,
  ’Twixt fear and passion,—no bold words that strip
  The feigning garb off in which we two stand,
Acting our parts, at the harsh world’s command,—        5
  No deed that offers to our dust a sip
  Of heavenly nectar,—no incautious slip,
  To wring a tear, yet calmly bear the brand,
For the great love through which we were betrayed!
  Love flies with us on sorely crippled wings:        10
  Prudence, and interest, and the bitter stings
Of shrewd distrust, are doled me. I am made
  A beggar on your bounty. Lend me aid:
  My heart starves, lady, on these wretched things.

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