To ----

By Percy Bysshe Shelley 1792–1822 Percy Bysshe Shelley
   One word is too often profaned
      For me to profane it,
One feeling too falsely disdained
      For thee to disdain it;
One hope is too like despair
      For prudence to smother,
And pity from thee more dear
      Than that from another.

   I can give not what men call love,
      But wilt thou accept not
The worship the heart lifts above
      And the Heavens reject not,—
The desire of the moth for the star,
      Of the night for the morrow,
The devotion to something afar
      From the sphere of our sorrow?

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Poet Percy Bysshe Shelley 1792–1822

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Romantic

Subjects Relationships, Love, Romantic Love, Unrequited Love, Realistic & Complicated

Occasions Farewells & Good Luck

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

 Percy  Bysshe Shelley

Biography

The life and works of Percy Bysshe Shelley exemplify Romanticism in both its extremes of joyous ecstasy and brooding despair. The major themes are there in Shelley’s dramatic if short life and in his works, enigmatic, inspiring, and lasting: the restlessness and brooding, the rebellion against authority, the interchange with nature, the power of the visionary imagination and of poetry, the pursuit of ideal love, and the untamed . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Relationships, Love, Romantic Love, Unrequited Love, Realistic & Complicated

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Romantic

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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