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To Phœbe

Fun n.s. I - 26th Aug. 1865

Illustration added by Gilbert in 1898

"Gentle, modest, little flower,
Sweet epitome of May,
Love me but for half-an-hour,
Love me, love me, little fay."
Sentences so fiercely flaming
In your tiny shell-like ear,
I should always be exclaiming
If I loved you, Phœbe, dear.

"Smiles that thrill from any distance
Shed upon me while I sing!
Please ecstaticise existence,
Love me, oh thou fairy thing!"
Words like these, outpouring sadly,
You'd perpetually hear,
If I loved you, fondly, madly;--
But I do not, Phœbe, dear.

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