The Two Loves.

A poem by Thomas Moore

There are two Loves, the poet sings,
Both born of Beauty at a birth:
The one, akin to heaven, hath wings,
The other, earthly, walks on earth.
With this thro' bowers below we play,
With that thro' clouds above we soar;
With both, perchance, may lose our way:--
Then, tell me which,
Tell me which shall we adore?

The one, when tempted down from air,
At Pleasure's fount to lave his lip,
Nor lingers long, nor oft will dare
His wing within the wave to dip.
While plunging deep and long beneath,
The other bathes him o'er and o'er
In that sweet current, even to death:--
Then, tell me which,
Tell me which shall we adore?

The boy of heaven, even while he lies
In Beauty's lap, recalls his home;
And when most happy, inly sighs
For something happier still to come.
While he of earth, too fully blest
With this bright world to dream of more,
Sees all his heaven on Beauty's breast:--
Then, tell me which,
Tell me which shall we adore?

The maid who heard the poet sing
These twin-desires of earth and sky,
And saw while one inspired his string,
The other glistened in his eye,--
To name the earthlier boy ashamed,
To chose the other fondly loath,
At length all blushing she exclaimed,--
"Ask not which,
"Oh, ask not which--we'll worship both.

"The extremes of each thus taught to shun,
"With hearts and souls between them given,
"When weary of this earth with one,
"We'll with the other wing to heaven."
Thus pledged the maid her vow of bliss;
And while one Love wrote down the oath,
The other sealed it with a kiss;
And Heaven looked on,
Heaven looked on and hallowed both.

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