The Self Banished

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It is not that I love you less
 Than when before your feet I lay,
 But to prevent the sad increase
 Of hopeless love, I keep away.

  In vain (alas!) for everything
 Which I have known belong to you,
 Your form does to my fancy bring,
 And makes my old wounds bleed anew.

  Who in the spring from the new sun
  Already has a fever got,
  Too late begins those shafts to shun,
  Which Ph{oe}bus through his veins has shot.

 Too late he would the pain assuage,
  And to thick shadows does retire;
  About with him he bears the rage,
  And in his tainted blood the fire.

 But vow'd I have, and never must
  Your banish'd servant trouble you;
  For if I break, you may distrust
  The vow I made to love you, too.

© Edmund Waller