|If You Decree This Death|
I have loved you so long—it seems like all my life—
In sickness and in health, in absence and when near;
I have loved you with such devotion,
With an all-enduring fire in my heart;
I have loved you with such tenderness,
Wishing your happiness above all things;
I have loved you with such depth,
Seeing in you embodied whole philosophies
To which I swore allegiance before we ever met;
And I have loved you with such folly,
Risking for you far more than you can guess.
Can it be that such intensities
Will strike in you no answering spark;
Must burn themselves out in a bleak despair,
Flickering, thwarted, hopeless, dying miserably
Before a wall of cold and blank indifference?
If you decree this death, you will have killed
A beauty that had lifted you on high,
Brought joy and calm, and even ecstasy;
Deepening and broadening and straightening
The twisted, turbulent currents of your life.
If you will play the callous executioner,
You execute yourself as well as me.
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