I am sweetly perplexed by love sallies, releases,
By the countless retreats and the numberless captures,
By the petulant coldness and agreeable raptures,
By the whisper of phrases that hurts and then pleases,
I am drunk by the prodigal total of leases
From her body and spirit, her soul and her senses,
I revel in approaches and artless offenses,
In her challenging taunts and her tenderly teases.
Now will I disengage a red flower from her tresses,
And uplift her lithe form from a divan of roses,
For the zephyr of night too much passion opposes,
And in delicate folds now has rumpled her dresses.
On tomorrow’s new ventures the heart eager presses,
I repose now to ponder on life-soothing losses.
From Manila: A Collection of Verse (Imp. Paredes, Inc., 1926) by Luis Dato. This poem is in the public domain.