First World War Poetry Digital Archive

Perversity

PERVERSITY by WILFRED OWEN

We all love more the Passed and the To Be Than actual time, and far things more than near. Perverse we all are somehow; calling dear Rather the rare than fair. But as for me, How singular and sad that I should see More loveliness in Grecian marbles clear Than modern flesh, to beauty insincere; Less glory in a man than any tree.

I fall in love with children, elfin fair; Portraits; dark ladies in dark tales antique; Or instantaneous faces passed in streets. I know the dim old gods that never were, Better than men. One friend I love unique, But now, thou canst not dream I love thee, Keats!

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