Great Love

I.

GREAT LOVE IS HUMBLE.

HUMBLE is Love, for he is Honor's child:
He knows the worth of her he does adore,
And that high reckoning humbles him the more:
By her dear sweetness from his pain beguiled,
He would be proud because her look is mild;
But all the while he scans the oft-told score,
And his imperfectness must still deplore,
Abashed no less because on him she smiled.

To be allowed to love is Love's dear prize:
To lay his homage at Her royal feet —
To enter thus the true heart's paradise,
The name of names forever to repeat,
And read his sentence in her answering eyes —
Love should be humble — his reward is meet.

II.

GREAT LOVE IS PROUD.

For very humbleness Great Love is proud:
The round world were a tribute thrice too small
To render to the rightful queen of all —
Yet why should Love's least gift be disavowed —
If once her royal head the queen has bowed,
Lending her gracious ear to the low call
Of him whose glory is to be her thrall —
Who only prays his worship be allowed?

Once to have known her fairness — who is fair
Beyond the dreamer's dream, the painter's art —
This, only this, were bliss above compare:
But if he find the gateway to her heart,
Shall he not, like a king, be set apart
Who for one royal moment entered there?
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