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Or whether doth my mind, being crown'd with you,
Drink up the monarch's plague, this flattery,
Or whether shall I say mine eye saith true,
And that your love taught it this alcumy,
To make of monsters and things indigest,
Such cherubins as your sweet self resemble,
Creating every bad a perfect best,
As fast as objects to his beams assemble?
O'tis the first; 'tis flattery in my seeing,
And my great mjud most kiogly drinks it up:
Mine eye well knows what with his gust is 'greeing,
And to his palate doth prepare the cup:
If it be poison'd, 'tis the lesser sin
That mine eye loves it, and doth first begin.
Those lines that I before have writ, do lie,
Even those that said I could not love you dearer;
Yet then my judgement kuew no reason why
My most full flame should afterwards burn clearer.
But reckoning time, whose million'd accidents
Creep in 'twixt vows, and change decrees of kings,
Tan sacred beauty, blunt the sharp'st intents,
Divert strong minds to the course of altering things;
Alas! why, fearing of time's tyranny,
Might I not then say, now I love you best,
When I was certain o'er incertainty,
Crowning the present, doubting of the rest?
Love is a babe; tben might I not say so,
To give full growth to that which still doth grow?
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which allers when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error, and upon 'me prov'd,
I never writ, nor no man ever lor'd.
Accuse me thus; that I have scanted all
Wherein I should your great deserts repay;
Forgot upon your dearest love to call,
Whereto all bonds do tie me day by day;
That I have frequent been with unknown minds,
And given to time your own dear-purchas'd right;
That I have hoisted sail to all the winds
Which should transport me farthest from your sight.
Book both my wilfulness and errors down,
And on just proof, surmise accumulate,
Bring me within the level of your frown,
But shoot not at me in your waken'd hate :
Since my appeal says, I did strive to prove
The constancy and virtue of your love.
Like as, to make our appetites more keen,
With eager compounds we our palate urge:
As, to prevent our maladies unseen,
We sicken to shun sickness, when we purge;
Even so, being full of your ne'er-cloying sweetness,
To bitter sauces did I frame my feeding,
And, sick of welfare, found a kind of meetness
To be diseas'd, ere that there was true needing.
Thus policy in love, to anticipate
The ills that were not, grew to faults assured,
And brought to medicine a healthful state,
Which, rank of goodness, would by ill be cured.
But ibence I learn, and find the lesson true,
Drugs poison bim that so fell sick of you.
What potions have I drunk of Syren tears,
Distill'd from limbecks foul as hell within,
Applying fears to hopes, and hopes to fears,
Still losing when I saw myself to win!
What wretched errors bath my heart committed,
Whilst it bath thought itself so blessed never!
How have mine eyes out of their spheres been fitted,
In the distraction of this madding fever !
O benefit of ill! pow I find true
That better is by evil still made better;
And ruin'd love, when it is built anew,
Grows fairer than at first, more strong, far greater.
So I return rebuk'd to my content,
And gain by ill thrice more than I have spent.
That you were once unkind, befriends me now,
And for that sorrow, which I then did feel,
Needs must I under my transgression bow,
Unless my nerves were brass or hammer'd steel,
For if you were by my aakindness shaken,
As I by your's, you have pass'd a hell of time;
And I, a tyrant, have no leisure taken
To weigh low once I suffer'd in your crime.
O that our night of woe might have remember'd
My deepest sense, how hard true sorrow bits,
And soon to you, as you to me, then tender'd
The humble salve wbich wounded bosom fits!
But that your trespass now becomes a fee;
Mine ransom your's, and your's must ransom me.
"T'is better to be vile, than vile esteemid,
When not to be receives reproach of being,
And the just pleasure lost, which is so deem'd
Not by our feeling, but by others' seeing.
For why should others' false adulterate eyes
Give salutation to my sportive blood?
Or on my frailties why are frailer spies,
Which in their wills count bad wbat I think good ?
No,-1 am that I am; and they tbat level
At my abuses, reckon up their own:
I may be straight, though they themselves be bevel ;
By their rank thoughts my deeds must not be shown;
Unless this general evil they maintain,
All men are bad and in their badness reign.
Thy gift, thy tables are within my brain
Full character'd with lasting memory,
Which shall above that idle rank remain,
Beyond all date, even to eternity:
Or at the least so long as brain and heart
Have faculty by nature to subsist;
Till each to raz'd oblivion yield bis part
Or thee, thy record never can be miss'd.
That poor retention could not so much bold,
Nor need I tallies, thy dear love to score;
Therefore to give them from me was I bold,
To trust those tables that receive thee more:
To keep an adjunct to remember thee,
Were to import forgetfulness in me.
No! Time, thou shalt not boast that I do change :
Thy pyramids built up with newer might
To me are nothing novel, nothing strange;
They are but dressings of a former sight.
Our dates are brief, and therefore we admire
What thou dost foist upon us that is old,
And rather make them born to our desire,
Than think that we before have heard them told.
Thy registers and thee I both defy,
Not wondering at the present nor the past;
For thy records and what we see doth lie,
Made more or less by thy continual baste:
This I do vow, and this shall ever be,
I will be true, despite thy scythe and thee.
If my dear love were but the obild of state,
It might for fortune's bastard be upfather'd,
As subject to Time's love, or to Time's hate,
Weeds among weeds, or flowers with flowers gather'd.
No, it was builded far from accident;
It suffers not in smiling pomp, nor falls
Under the blow of thralled discontent,
Whereto the inviting time our fashion calls :
It fears not policy, that heretick,
Wbich works on leases of short-number'd hours,
But all alone stands bugely politick,
That it not grows with heat, nor drowns with showers.
To this I witness call the fools of time,
Which die for goodness, who have liv'd for crime.
Were it aught to me I bore the canopy,
With my extern the outwardshonouring,
Or lay'd great bases for eternity,
Wbich prove more short than waste or ruining?
Have I not seen dwellers on form and favour
Lose all, and more, by paying too much rent,
For compound sweet foregoing simple savour,
Pitiful thrivers, in their gazing spent ?
No;,let me be obsequious in thy heart,
And take tbou my oblation, poor but free,
Which is not mix'd with seconds, knows no art,
But mutual render, only'me for thee.
Hence, thou suborn'd informer! a true soul,
Whew most impeach'd, stands least in thy control.
O thou, my lovely boy, who in thy power
Dost hold Time's fickle glass, bis sickle, hour;
Who hast by waning grown, and therein show'st
Thy lovers withering, as thy sweet self grow'st!
If nature, sovereign mistress over wrack,
As thou goest onwards, still will pluck thee back,
She keeps thee to this purpose, that her skill
May time disgrace, and wretched minutes kill.
Yet fear her, O thou minion of her pleasure ;
She may detaip, but not still keep her treasure:
Her audit, though delay'd, answer'd must be,
And her quietus is to render thee.
In the old age black was not counted fair,
Or if it were, it bore not beauty's name;
But now is black beauty's successive heir,
And beauty slander'd with a bastard shame.
For since each band hath put on nature's power,
Fairing the foul with art's false borrow'd face,
Sweet beauty hath no name, no holy hour,
But is profan'd, if not lives in disgrace."
Therefore my mistress' eyes are raven black,
Her eyes so suited: and they mourners seem
At sach, who not born fair, no beauty.lack,
Slandering creation with a false esteem:
Yet so they mourn, becoming of their woe,
That every tongue says, beauty should look so.
How oft, when thou, my musick, musick play'st,
Upon that blessed wood whose motion sounds
With thy sweet fingers, when thou gently sway'st
The wiry concord that mine ear confounds,
Do I envy' those jacks, that nimble leap
To kiss the tender inward of thy hand,
Whilst my poor lips, which should that harvest reap,
At the wood's boldness by thee blushing stand!
To be so tickled, they would change their state
And situation with those dancing chips,
O'er whom thy fingers walk with gentle gait,
Making dead wood more bless'd than living lips.
Since saucy jacks so happy are in this,
Give them thy fingers, me thy lips to kiss.