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“The More Loving One” by W. H. Auden

Looking up at the stars, I know quite well

That, for all they care, I can go to hell,

But on earth indifference is the least

We have to dread from man or beast.

 

How should we like it were stars to burn

With a passion for us we could not return?

If equal affection cannot be,

Let the more loving one be me.

 

Admirer as I think I am

Of stars that do not give a damn,

I cannot, now I see them, say

I missed one terribly all day.

 

Were all stars to disappear or die,

I should learn to look at an empty sky

And feel its total dark sublime,

Though this might take me a little time.

 

“A Valediction: Forbidden Mourning” by John Donne

As virtuous men pass mildly away,
     And whisper to their souls to go,
Whilst some of their sad friends do say
     The breath goes now, and some say, No:

So let us melt, and make no noise,
     No tear-floods, nor sigh-tempests move,
‘Twere profanation of our joys
     To tell the laity our love.

Moving of th’ earth brings harms and fears,
     Men reckon what it did and meant,
But trepidation of the spheres,
     Though greater far, is innocent.

Dull sublunary lovers’ love
     (Whose soul is sense) cannot admit
Absence, because it doth remove
     Those things which elemented it.

But we by a love so much refined
     That our selves know not what it is,
Inter-assur’d of the mind,
     Care less, eyes, lips, and hands to miss.

Our two souls therefore, which are one,
     Though I must go, endure not yet
A breach, but an expansion,
     Like gold to aery thinness beat.

If they be two, they are two so
     As stiff twin compasses are two;
Thy soul, the fixed foot, makes no show
     To move, but doth, if th’ other do.

And though it in the centre sit,
     Yet when the other far doth roam,
It leans and hearkens after it,
     And grows erect, as that comes home.

Such wilt thou be to me, who must
     Like th’ other foot, obliquely run;
Thy firmness makes my circle just,
     And makes me end where I begun.

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. sojo
    December 19, 2008 at 3:23 pm

    i can’t really say i love anything by donne more

    • Katie
      December 19, 2008 at 4:40 pm

      It is THE best.

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