Coventry Patmore

(23 July 1823 - 26 November 1896 / Essex, England)

Mignonne - Poem by Coventry Patmore

Whate'er thou dost thou'rt dear.
Uncertain troubles sanctify
That magic well-spring of the willing tear,
Thine eye.
Thy jealous fear,
With not the rustle of a rival near;
Thy careless disregard of all
My tenderest care;
Thy dumb despair
When thy keen wit my worship may construe
Into contempt of thy divinity;
They please me too!
But should it once befall
These accidental charms to disappear,
Leaving withal
Thy sometime self the same throughout the year,
So glowing, grave and shy,
Kind, talkative and dear
As now thou sitt'st to ply
The fireside tune
Of that neat engine deft at which thou sew'st
With fingers mild and foot like the new moon,
O, then what cross of any further fate
Could my content abate?
Forget, then, (but I know
Thou canst not so,)
Thy customs of some prædiluvian state.
I am no Bullfinch, fair my Butterfly,
That thou should'st try
Those zigzag courses, in the welkin clear;
Nor cruel Boy that, fledd'st thou straight
Or paused, mayhap
Might catch thee, for thy colours, with his cap.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, April 14, 2010

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