Selina had such lustrous eyes
Of real sapphire blue,
They seemed one's soul to mesmerise,
And looked one through and through.
Yet Agnes I cannot forget,
She brought me joy with pain.
I would that we had never met—
"Your stroke!" That voice! My Jane!
O feeblest game, how strange if you should rise
To favour, vice tennis superseded!
And yet beneath such glowing summer skies
When wildest energy is invalided,
Mere hitting balls through little hoops
Seems work enough. One merely stoops,
And lounges round; no other toil is needed.
Upon a breezy lawn beneath the shade
Of rustling trees that hide the sky so sunny,
I'll play, no steady game as would be played
By solemn, earnest folks as though for money—
For love is better. Simply stoop,
And hit the ball. It's through the hoop!
My partner smiles; she seems to think it funny.
My pretty partner, whose bright, laughing eyes
Gaze at me while I aim another blow; lo,
I've missed because I looked at her! With sighs
I murmur an apologetic solo.
The proudest athlete here might stoop,
To hit a ball just through a hoop,
And say the game—with her—beats golf and polo.