My passion I had tethered in disdain,
Denied for higher virtues to fulfill,
Denied I say, but to no greater gain,
Pressed to compel with such a blunted quill.
What folly I endorsed to my lament
Possessing such a rapier never drawn,
How worthless was that coin I never spent,
If not to virtue’s then my profit’s scorn!
But beauty did in you my blunder heal
And cause my stoic heart to brim with verse,
That sword—my quill—now keen with ardent zeal
To vanquish all things trite and dull and terse!
Neither for love nor vanity, but passion,
Your beauty, while it lasts, will be my fashion.