Monday, August 19, 2019

JOHN KEATS from “Isabella; or, The Pot of Basil“

Were they unhappy then?—It cannot be—
 Too many tears for lovers have been shed,
Too many sighs give we to them in fee,
 Too much of pity after they are dead,
Too many doleful stories do we see,
 Whose matter in bright gold were best be read;
Except in such a page where Theseus’ spouse
Over the pathless waves towards him bows.

But, for the general award of love,
 The little sweet doth kill much bitterness;
Though Dido silent is in under-grove,
 And Isabella’s was a great distress,
Though young Lorenzo in warm Indian clove
 Was not embalm’d, this truth is not the less—
Even bees, the little almsmen of spring-bowers,
Know there is richest juice in poison-flowers.

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