354. The Resolve

Alexander Brome. 1620-1666

TELL me not of a face that 's fair,
  Nor lip and cheek that 's red,
Nor of the tresses of her hair,
  Nor curls in order laid,
Nor of a rare seraphic voice
  That like an angel sings;
Though if I were to take my choice
  I would have all these things:
But if that thou wilt have me love,
  And it must be a she,
The only argument can move
  Is that she will love me.

The glories of your ladies be
  But metaphors of things,
And but resemble what we see
  Each common object brings.
Roses out-red their lips and cheeks,
  Lilies their whiteness stain;
What fool is he that shadows seeks
  And may the substance gain?
Then if thou'lt have me love a lass,
  Let it be one that 's kind:
Else I'm a servant to the glass
  That 's with Canary lined.

The Oxford Book of English Verse, HTML edition