But were I Loved
~Alfred Lord Tennyson (1809-1892)
But were I loved, as I desire to be,
What is there in the great sphere of the earth,
And range of evil between death and birth,
That I should fear, if I were loved by thee?
All the inner, all the outer world of pain
Clear Love would pierce and cleave, if thou wert mine,
As I have heard that, somewhere in the main,
Fresh water springs come up through bitter brine.
Twere joy, not fear, clasped hand-in-hand with thee,
To wait for death-mute-careless of all ills,
Apart upon a mountain, tho’ the surge
Of some new deluge from a thousand hills
Flung leagues of roaring foam into the gorge
Below us, as far on as eye would see.