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Robert Browning

A Woman's Last Word (1855)

Let's contend no more, Love,
       Strive nor weep:
All be as before, Love,
       -- Only sleep!

What so wild as words are?
       I and thou
In debate, as birds are,
       Hawk on bough!

See the creature stalking
       While we speak!
Hush and hide the talking,
       Cheek on cheek!

What so false as truth is,
       False to thee?
Where the serpent's tooth is
       Shun the tree --

Where the apple reddens
       Never pry --
Lest we lose our Edens,
       Eve and I.

Be a god and hold me
       With a charm!
Be a man and fold me
       With thine arm!

Teach me, only teach, Love!
       As I ought
I will speak thy speech, Love,
       Think thy thought --

Meet, if thou require it,
       Both demands,
Laying flesh and spirit
       In thy hands.

That shall be tomorrow
       Not to-night:
I must bury sorrow
       Out of sight:

-- Must a little weep, Love,
       (Foolish me!)
And so fall asleep, Love,
       Loved by thee.