by John Donne
NO lover saith, I love, nor any other
Can judge a perfect lover ;
He thinks that else none can or will agree,
That any loves but he ;
I cannot say I loved, for who can say
He was kill'd yesterday.
Love with excess of heat, more young than old,
Death kills with too much
We die but once, and who loved last did die,
He that saith, twice, doth
For though he seem to move, and stir a while,
It doth the sense beguile.
Such life is like the light which bideth yet
When the life's light is set,
Or like the heat which fire in solid matter
Leaves behind, two hours
Once I loved and died ; and am now become
Mine epitaph and tomb ;
Here dead men speak their last, and so do I ;
Love-slain, lo ! here I die.
Donne, John. Poems of John Donne. vol I.
E. K. Chambers, ed.
London: Lawrence & Bullen, 1896. 74-75.