I had this poem (or part thereof) written in my first Valentine card, more years ago than I care to remember. Several years ago I took it to our Central library and a lovely old gentleman librarian led me directly to a shelf, took down a book and found the whole poem! He photocopied it for me and I brought it home, putting it away safely (or so I thought) with that warm glow of finding something you never thought you would. A few nights later our house was broken into, and lots of my personal belongings, including the copy of the poem were stolen. I'm ashamed to say that it took me a long time to realise it had gone and of course, by that time I'd forgotten the name of the poem and the poet.Help finding it again would be much appreciated.
This may not be word perfect, but it's the best my memory can do.........
Bid me to live and I will live, thy Protestant to be,
Or bid me give and I will give a loving heart to thee.
A heart as good, a heart as kind, a heart as brave and free
As in this whole world thou canst find, that heart I'll give to thee.
Thou art my love, my life, my whole, the very heart of me,
And hast command of every part to live or die for thee.
Hello Christine, happy to oblige:–
To Anthea, who may command him Anything
Bid me to live, and I will live
Thy Protestant to be;
Or bid me love, and I will give
A loving heart to thee.
A heart as soft, a heart as kind,
A heart as sound and free
As in the whole world thou canst find,
That heart I'll give to thee.
Bid that heart to stay, and it will stay
To honour thy decree:
Or bid it languish quite away,
And 't shall do so for thee.
Bid me to weep, and I will weep
While I have eyes to see:
And, having none, yet will keep
A heart to weep for thee.
Bid me despair and I'll despair
Under that cypress tree:
Or bid me die and I will dare
E'en death to die for thee.
Thou art my life, my love, my heart,
The very eyes of me:
And hast command of every part
To live and die for thee.
I sent this poem to a girl I was courting many years ago, and we are still married!
Incidently,there is another poem which is as moving to me as this; again about the ache of love. It is called "To Lizbie Browne", by Thomas Hardy. It is worth looking up, but if you have difficulty finding it, I will again oblige.