John Dryden

Hidden Flame

Feed a flame within, which so torments me 
That it both pains my heart, and yet contents me: 
'Tis such a pleasing smart, and I so love it, 
That I had rather die than once remove it. 

Yet he, for whom I grieve, shall never know it; 
My tongue does not betray, nor my eyes show it. 
Not a sigh, nor a tear, my pain discloses, 
But they fall silently, like dew on roses. 

Thus, to prevent my Love from being cruel, 
My heart 's the sacrifice, as 'tis the fuel; 
And while I suffer this to give him quiet, 
My faith rewards my love, though he deny it. 

On his eyes will I gaze, and there delight me; 
While I conceal my love no frown can fright me. 
To be more happy I dare not aspire, 
Nor can I fall more low, mounting no higher.