Sonnet 24

It must be so, — my infant love must find
In my own breast a cradle and a grave;
Like a rich jewel hid beneath the wave,
Or rebel spirit bound within the rind
Of some old wreathed oak, or fast enshrined
In the cold durance of an echoing cave: —
Yea, better thus than cold disdain to brave: —
Or worse, — to taint the quiet of that mind,
That decks its temple with unearthly grace.
Together must we dwell, my dream and I, —
Unknown must live, and unlamented die,
Rather than soil the lustre of that face,
Or drive that laughing dimple from its place,
Or heave that white breast with a painful sigh.
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