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Game of love

Carved in my heart are ten cold stepping stones,
each lettered with a name remembered well,
and uttered with such deep and grievous groans
as might announce some hell.

But such sweet griefs as these a man may climb,
who longs to reach the summits of his love,
and suffers yet no lesser paradigm
than setting free his dove.

And if to keep her I must make a cage,
although it be of gold with beauteous bells,
instead I'll simply shuffle from the stage,
and make no jealous hells.

What does it profit man to have his will?
To enter into emptiness and shame,
still drinking deep of what can never fill,
by making love a game.

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