She Walks in Beauty
by George Gordon, Lord Byron
The speaker of "She Walks in Beauty" admires the effortless harmony of a woman's beauty, and tells us that it's all about the perfect balance of light and dark in her whole face and figure. He never says he's in love with her, but the reader can guess that he's attracted to her – after all, he can't stop talking about her hair, her eyes, her cheeks… the list goes on. But in case you were starting to suspect that the speaker wants to seduce the unnamed beauty, he starts telling us that her good looks are really a reflection of her inner goodness. And purity! She's so innocent! Her "mind is at peace"! There's nothing going on between them, honest! At least… not on her side. By the end of the poem, it seems like the speaker is protesting a little too much. By insisting repeatedly that the lady is pure and that her "love is innocent," it's hard not to suspect that he perhaps wishes that weren't the case.