Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Astrophel and Stella
Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
Astrophel and Stella
VII. When Nature made her chief work—Stella’s eyes
Sir Philip Sidney (1554–1586)
WHEN Nature made her chief work—STELLA’s eyes;
In colour black, why wrapt she beams so bright?
Would she in beamy black, like painter wise,
Frame daintiest lustre, mixed of shades and light?
  Or did she else that sober hue devise,        5
In object best to knit and strength our sight?
Lest if no veil these brave gleams did disguise,
They sun-like should more dazzle than delight.
  Or would she her miraculous power show?
That whereas black seems beauty’s contrary;        10
She, even in black, doth make all beauties flow!
  But so and thus, she minding LOVE should be
Placed ever there, gave him this mourning weed;
To honour all their deaths, which for her bleed.

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