Sonnets from the Portuguese: XL

Original Text: 
A Selection from the Poetry of Elizabeth Barrett Browning. First Series. New Edition. London: Smith, Elder, & Co., 1886. 1: 181-202.
1Oh, yes! they love through all this world of ours!
2I will not gainsay love, called love forsooth:
3I have heard love talked in my early youth,
4And since, not so long back but that the flowers
6Throw kerchiefs at a smile, and have no ruth
8Slips on the nut if, after frequent showers,
9The shell is over-smooth,-and not so much
10Will turn the thing called love, aside to hate
11Or else to oblivion. But thou art not such
12A lover, my Belovèd! thou canst wait
13Through sorrow and sickness, to bring souls to touch,
14And think it soon when others cry ."Too late.."


5] Mussulmans: Muslims
Giaours: a Turkish name for non-Muslims, especially Christians, usually meant reproachfully Back to Line
7] Polypheme's white tooth: Polyphemus was the cyclops from the Odyssey, blinded by Odysseus. The story of Polyphemus eating a nut is untraced. Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
RPO poem Editors: 
Marc R. Plamondon
RPO Edition: