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I may be straight, though they themselves be Which is not mix'd with seconds, knows no art, bevel;

But mutual render, only me for thee. By their rank thoughts my deeds must not be Hence, thou suborn'd informer! a true soul shown;

When most impeach'd stands least in thy control. Unless this general evil they maintain,

All men are bad, and in their badness reign.

O thou, my lovely boy, who in thy power

Dost hold Time's fickle glass, his sickle, hour; Thy gift, thy tables, are within my brain

Who hast by waning grown, and therein show'st Full character'd with lasting memory,

Thy lovers withering as thy sweet self grow'st; Which shall above that idle rank remain

If Nature, sovereign mistress over wrack, Beyond all date, even to eternity;

As thou guest onwards, still will pluck thee back, Or at the least, so long as brain and heart She keeps thee to this purpose, that her skill Have faculty by nature to subsist;

May time disgrace and wretched minutes kill. Till each to razed oblivion yield his part

Yet fear her, I thou minion of her pleasure ! Of thee, thy record never can be miss'd.

She may detain, but not still keep, her treasure:
That poor retention could not so much hold, Her audit, though delay'd, answer'd must be,
Nor need I tallies thy dear love to score ; And her quietus is to render thee.
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: In the old age black was not counted fair,
Thy pyramids built up with newer might

Or if it were, it bore not beauty's name;
To me are nothing novel, nothing strange; But now is black beauty's successive heir,
They are but dressings of a former sight.

And beauty slander'd with a bastard shame: Our dates are brief, and therefore we admire

For since each hand hath put on nature's power, What thou dost foist upon us that is old,

Fairing the foul with art's false borrow'd face, And rather make them born to our desire

Sweet beauty hath no name, no holy bower, Than think that we before have heard them told. But is profaned, if not lives in disgrace. Thy registers and thee I both defy,

Therefore my mistress' brows are raven black, Not wondering at the present nor the past,

Her eyes so suited, and they mourners seem For thy records and what we see doth lie, At such who, not born fair, no beauty lack, Made more or less by thy continual haste. Slandering creation with a false esteem: This I do vow and this shall ever be ;

Yet so they mourn, becoming of their woe, I will be true, despite thy scythe and thee. That every tongue says beauty should look so. CXXIV.

CXXVIII. If my dear love were but the child of state, How oft, when thou, my music, music play'st, It might for Fortune's bastard be unfather'd, Upon that blessed wood whose motion sounds As subject to Time's love or to Time's hate, With thy sweet fingers, when thou gently sway'st Weeds among weeds, or flowers with flowers The wiry concord that mine ear confounds, gather'd.

Do I envy those jacks that nimble leap No, it was builded far from accident;

To kiss the tender inward of thy hand, It suffers not in smiling pomp, nor falls

Whilst my poor lips, which should that harvest Under the blow of thralled discontent,

reap, Whereto the inviting time our fashion calls: At the wood's boldness by thee blushing stand! It fears not policy, that heretic,

To be so tickled, they would change their state Which works on leases of short-number'd hours, And situation with those dancing chips, But all alone stands hugely politic,

O'er whom thy fingers walk with gentle gait, That it nor grows with heat nor drowns with Making dead wood more blest than living lips. showers.

Since saucy jacks so happy are in this, To this I witness call the fools of tiine,

Give them thy fingers, me thy lips to kiss. Which die for goodness, who have lived for

CXXIX. crime.


expense of spirit in a waste of shame CXXV.

Is lust in action; and till action, lust Were 't aught to me I bore the canopy,

Is perjured, murderous, bloody, full of blame, With my extern the outward honouring,

Savage, extreme, rude, cruel, not to trust, Or laid great bases for eternity,

Enjoy'd no sooner but despised straight, Which prove more short than waste or ruining ? Past reason hunted, and no sooner had Have I not seen dwellers on form and favour Past reason hated, as a swallow'd bait Lose all, and more, by paying too much rent, On

purpose laid to make the taker mad; For compound sweet forgoing simple savour, Mad in pursuit and in possession so; Pitiful thrivers, in their gazing spent?

Had, having, and in quest to have, extreme; No, let me be obsequious in thy heart,

A bliss in proof, and proved, a very woe; And take thou my oblation, poor but free, Before, a joy proposed; behind, a dream.


All this the world well knows; yet none knows

CXXXIV. well

So, now I have confess’d that he is thine,
To shun the heaven that leads men to this hell. And I myself am mortgaged to thy will,

Myself I'll forfeit, so that other mine

Thou wilt restore, to be my comfort still:
My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun; But thou wilt not, nor he will not be free,
Coral is far more red than her lips' red;

For thou art covetous and he is kind;
If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun; He learn'd but surety-like to write for me
Jf hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head. Under that bond that him as fast doth bind.
I have seen roses damask'd, red and white, The statute of thy beauty thou wilt take,
But no such roses see I in her cheeks;

Thou usurer, that put'st forth all to use,
And in some perfumes is there more delight And sue a friend came debtor for my sake ;
Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks. So him I lose through my unkind abuse.
I love to hear her speak, yet well I know

Him have I lost; thou hast both him and me:
That music hath a far more pleasing sound; He pays the whole, and yet am I not free.
I grant I never saw a goddess go;

CXXXV. My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground:

Whoever hath her wish, thou hast thy Will,' And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare And ‘Will' to boot, and “Will' in overplus; As any she belied with false compare.

More than enough am I that vex thee still,
To thy sweet will making addition thus.

Wilt thou, whose will is large and spacious, Thou art as tyrannous, so as thou art,

Not once vouchsafe to hide my will in thine? As those whose beauties proudly make them cruel; Shall will in others seem right gracious, For well thou know'st to my dear doting heart And in my will no fair acceptance shine? Thou art the fairest and most precious jewel. The sea, all water, yet receives rain still Yet, in good faith, some say that thee behold And in abundance addeth to his store ; Thy face hath not the power to make love groan: So thou, being rich in Will,' add to thy ‘Will' To say they err I dare not be so bold,

One will of mine, to make thy large 'Will’ more. Although I swear it to myself alone.

Let no unkind, no fair beseechers kill; And, to be sure that is not false I swear,

Think all but one, and me in that one ‘Will.' A thousand groans, but thinking on thy face,

CXXXVI. One on another's neck, do witness bear Thy black is fairest in my judgement's place. If thy soul check thee that I come so near,

In nothing art thou black save in thy deeds, Swear to thy blind soul that I was thy Will,' And thence this slander, as I think, proceeds. And will, thy soul knows, is admitted there;

Thus far for love my love-suit, sweet, fulfil. CXXXII.

Will' will fulfil the treasure of thy love, Thine eyes I love, and they, as pitying me, Ay, fill it full with wills, and my will one. Knowing thy heart torments me with disdain, In things of great receipt with ease we prove Have put on black and loving mourners be, Among a number one is reckon’d none : Looking with pretty ruth upon my pain.

Then in the number let me pass untold, And truly not the morning sun of heaven

Though in thy stores' account I one must be ; Better becomes the grey cheeks of the east, For nothing hold me, so it please thee hold Nor that full star that ushers in the even

That nothing me, a something sweet to thee: Doth half that glory to the sober west,

Make but my name thy love, and love that still, As those two mourning eyes become thy face: And then thou lovest me, for my name is ‘Will.' 0, let it then as weli beseem thy heart

To mourn for me, since mourning doth thee grace,
And suit thy pity like in every part.

Thou blind fool, Love, what dost thou to mine eyes, Then will I swear beauty herself is black That they behold, and see not what they see? And all they foul that thy complexion lack. They know what beauty is, sce where it lies,

Yet what the best is take the worst to be.

If eyes corrupt by over-partial looks

Be anchor'd in the bay where all men ride, Beshrew that heart that makes my heart to groan Why of eyes' falsehood hast thou forged hooks, For that deep wound it gives my friend and me! Whereto the judgement of my heart is tied ? Is't not enough to torture me alone,

Why should my heart think that a several plot But slave to slavery my sweet'st friend must be ? Which my heart knows the wide world's common Me from myself thy cruel eye hath taken,

place? And my next self thou harder hast engross'd : Or mine eyes seeing this, say this is not, Of him, myself, and thee, I am forsaken;

To put fair truth upon so foul a face? A torment thrice threefold thus to be cross'd. In things right true my heart and eyes have erred, Prison my heart in thy steel bosom's ward,

And to this false plague are they now transferr d. But then my friend's heart let my poor heart bail; Whoe'er keeps me, let my heart be his guard;

CXXXVIII. Thou canst not then use rigour in my gaol:

And yet thou wilt; for I, being pent in thee, When my love swears that she is made of truth Perforce am thine, and all that is in me. I do believe her, though I know she lies,

That she might think me some untutor’d youth, Or, if it do, not from those lips of thine,
Unlearned in the world's false subtleties.

That have profaned their scarlet ornaments
Thus vainly thinking that she thinks me young, And seal'd false bonds of love as oft as mine,
Although she knows my days are past the best, Robb'd others beds' revenues of their rents.
Simply I credit her false-speaking tongue:, Be it lawful I love thee, as thou lovest those
On both sides thus is simple truth suppress’d. Whom thine eyes woo as mine importune thee:
But wherefore says she not she is unjust ? Root pity in thy heart, that when it grows
And wherefore say not I that I am old?

Thy pity may deserve to pitied be. 0, love's best habit is in seeming trust,

If thou dost seek to have what thou dost hide, And age in love loves not to have years told : By self-example mayst thou be denied ! Therefore I lie with her and she with me,

And in our faults by lies we flatter'd be.

Lo! as a careful housewife runs to catch

One of her feather'd creatures broke away, 0, call not me to justify the wrong

Sets down her babe and makes all swift dispatch That thy unkindness lays upon my heart; In pursuit of the thing she would have stay, Wound me not with thine eye but with thy tongue; Whilst her neglected child holds her in chase, Use power with power and slay me not by art. Cries to catch her whose busy care is bent Tell me thou lovest elsewhere, but in my sight, To follow that which flies before her face, Dear heart, forbear to glance thine eye aside : Not prizing her poor infant's discontent; What need'st thou wound with cunning when So runn'st thou after that which flies from thee, thy might

Whilst I thy babe chase thee afar behind; Is more than my o'er-press'd defence can bide? But if thou catch thy hope, turn back to me, Let me excuse thee : ah! my love well knows And play the mother's part, kiss me, be kind: Her pretty looks have been mine enemies,

So will I pray that thou mayst have thy .Will,'
And therefore from my face she turns my foes, If thou turn back, and my loud crying still.
That they elsewhere might dart their injuries:
Yet do not so; but since I am near slain,

Kill me outright with looks and rid my pain. Two loves I have of comfort and despair,

Which like two spirits do suggest me still:

The better angel is a man right fair,
Be wise as thou art cruel; do not press

The worser spirit a woman colour'd ill. My tongue-tied patience with too much disdain ; To win me soon to hell, my female evil Lest sorrow lend me words and words express Tempteth my better angel from my side, The manner of my pity-wanting pain.

And would corrupt my saint to be a devil, If I might teach thee wit, better it were,

Wooing his purity with her foul pride.
Though not to love, yet, love, to tell me so; And whether that my angel be turn'd fiend
As testy sick men, when their deaths be near, Suspect I may, yet not directly tell;
No news but health from their physicians know; But being both from me, both to each friend,
For if I should despair, I should grow mad, I guess one angel in another's hell:
And in my madness might speak ill of thee: Yet this shall I ne'er know, but live in doubt,
Now this ill-wresting world is grown so bad, Till my bad angel fire my good one out.
Mad slanderers by mad ears believed be.

That I may not be so, nor thou belied,
Bear thine eyes straight, though thy proud Those lips that Love's own hand did make
heart go wide.

Breathed forth the sound that said "I hate'

To me that languish'd for her sake;

But when she saw my woeful state,
In faith, I do not love thee with mine eyes, Straight in her heart did mercy come,
For they in thee a thousand errors note;

Chiding that tongue that ever sweet
But ’tis my heart that loves what they despise, Was used in giving gentle doom,
Who in despite of view is pleased to dote; And taught it thus anew to greet;
Nor are mine ears with thy tongue’s tune delighted, I hate' she alter’d with an end,
Nor tender feeling, to base touches prone,

That follow'd it as gentle day
Nor taste, nor smell, desire to be invited

Doth follow night, who like a fiend To any sensual feast with thee alone:

From heaven to hell is flown away;
But my five wits nor my five senses can

'I hate' from hate away she threw,
Dissuade one foolish heart from serving thee, And saved my life, saying 'not you.'
Who leaves unsway'd the likeness of a man,
Thy proud heart's slave and vassal wretch to be:

Only my plague thus far I count my gain,
That she that makes me sin awards me pain. Poor soul, the centre of my sinful earth,

f.......... these rebel powers that thee array,

Why dost thou pine within and suffer dearth, CXLII.

Painting thy outward walls so costly gay? Love is my sin and thy dear virtue hate,

Why so large cost, having so short a lease, Hate of my sin, grounded on sinful loving: Dost thou upon thy fading mansion spend ? 0, but with mine compare thou thine own state, Shell worms, inheritors of this excess, And thou shalt find it merits not reproving; Eat up thy charge? is this thy body's end?

Then, soul, live thou upon thy servant's loss, O, though I love what others do abhor,
And let that pine to aggravate thy store ;

With others thou shouldst not abhor my state : Buy terms divine in selling hours of dross;

If thy unworthiness raised love in me, Within be fed, without be rich no more :

More worthy I to be beloved of thee. So shalt thou feed on Death, that feeds on men,

CLI. And Death once dead, there's no more dying then.

Love is too young to know what conscience is;

Yet who knows not conscience is born of love? CXLVII.

Then, gentle cheater, urge not my amiss, My love is as a fever, longing still

Lest guilty of my faults thy sweet self prove: For that which longer nurseth the disease, For, thou betraying me, I do betray Feeding on that which doth preserve the ill, My nobler part to my gross body's treason; The uncertain sickly appetite to please.

My soul doth tell my body that he may My reason, the physician to my love,

Triumph in love; flesh stays no farther reason; Angry that his prescriptions are not kept, But, rising at thy name, doth point out thee Hath left me, and I desperate now approve

As his triumphant prize. Proud of this pride, Desire is death, which physic did except. He is contented thy poor drudge to be, Past cure I am, now reason is past care,

To stand in thy affairs, fall by thy side. And francic-mad with ever more unrest;

No want of conscience hold it that I call My thoughts and my discourse as madmen's are, Her 'love' for whose dear love I rise and fall. At random from the truth vainly express'd;

CLII. For I have sworn thee fair and thought thee bright,

In loving thee thou know'st I am forsworn, Who art as black as hell, as dark as night. But thou art twice forsworn, to me love swearing,

In act thy bed-vow broke and new faith torn CXLVIII.

In vowing new hate after new love bearing O me, what eyes hath Love put in my head, But why of two oaths' breach do I accuse thee, Which have no correspondence with true sight! When I break twenty? I am perjured most; Or, if they have, where is my judgement fied, For all my vows are oaths but to misuse thee That censures falsely what they see aright? And all my honest faith thee is lost, If that be fair whereon my false eyes dote,

For I have sworn deep oaths of thy deep kindness, What means the world to say it is not so?

Oaths of thy love, thy truth, thy constancy, If it be not, then love doth well denote

And, to enlighten thee, gave eyes to blindness, Love's eye is not so true as all men's 'No.' Or made them swear against the thing they see ; How can it? O, how can Love's eye be true,

For I have sworn thee fair; more perjured I, That is so vex'd with watching and with tears? To swear against the truth so foul a lie ! No marvel then, though I mistake my view; The sun itself sees not till heaven clears.

CLIII. O cunning Love! with tears thou keep'st me blind,

Cupid laid by his brand, and fell asleep:
Lest eyes well-seeing thy foul faults should find. A maid of Dian's this advantage found,

And his love-kindling fire did quickly steep

In a cold valley-fountain of that ground;
Canst thou, O cruel! say I love thee not, Which borrow'd from this holy fire of Love
When I against myself with thee partake? A dateless lively heat, still to endure,
Do I not think on thee, when I forgot

And grew a seething bath, which yet men prove Am of myself, all tyrant, for thy sake?

Against strange maladies a sovereign cure. Who hateth thee that I do call my friend? But at my mistress' eye Love's brand new-fired, On whom frown'st thou that I do fawn upon? The boy for trial needs would touch my breast; Nay, if thou lour'st on me, do I not spend I, sick withal, the help of bath desired, Revenge upon myself with present moan? And thither hied, a sad distemper'd guest, What merit do I in myself respect,

But found no cure: the bath for my help lies That is so proud thy service to despise,

Where Cupid got new fire-my mistress' eyes. When all my best doth worship thy defect,

Commanded by the motion of thine eyes?

But, love, hate on, for now I know thy mind; The little Love-god lying once asleep
Those that can see thou lovest, and I am blind. Laid by his side his heart-inflaming brand,

Whilst many nymphs that vow'd chaste life to keep

Came tripping by; but in her maiden hand O, from what power hast thou this powerful might The fairest votary took up that fire With insufficiency my heart to sway?

Which many legions of true hearts had warm'd; To make me give the lie to my true sight, And so the general of hot desire And swear that brightness doth not grace the day? Was sleeping by a virgin hand disarm’d. Whence hast thou this becoming of things ill, This brand she quenched in a cool well by, That in the very refuse of thy deeds

Which from Love's fire took heat perpetual, There is such strength and warrantise of skill Growing a bath and healthful remedy That, in my mind, thy worst all best exceeds? For men diseased; but I, my mistress' thrall, Who taught thee how to make me love thee more Came there for cure, and this by that I prove, The more I hear and see just cause of hate?

Love's fire heats water, water cools not love.




FROM off a hill whose concave womb re-worded This said, in top of rage the lines she rents, A plaintful story from a sistering vale,

Big discontent so breaking their contents. My spirits to attend this double voice accorded, And down I laid to list the sad-tuned tale; A reverend man that grazed his cattle nighEre long espied a fickle maid full pale,

Sometime a blusterer, that the ruffle knew Tearing of papers, breaking rings a-twain, Of court, of city, and had let go by Storming her world with sorrow's wind and rain. The swistest hours, observed as they flew- 60

Towards this afflicted fancy fastly drew, Upon her head a platted hive of straw,

And, privileged by age, desires to know Which fortified her visage from the sun,

In brief the grounds and motives of her woe. Whereon the thought might think sometime it saw The carcass of a beauty spent and done:

So slides he down upon his grained bat, Time had not scythed all that youth begun, And comely-distant sits he by her side ; Nor youth all quit; but, spite of heaven's fell rage, When he again desires her, being sat, Some beauty peep'd through lattice of sear'd age. Her grievance with his hearing to divide :

If that from him there may be aught applied Oft did she heave her napkin to her eyne, Which may her suffering ecstasy assuage, Which on it had conceited characters,

'Tis promised in the charity of age.

70 Laundering the silken figures in the brine That season'd woe had pelleted in tears,

'Father,' she says, 'though in me you behold And often reading what contents it bears; The injury of many a blasting hour, As often shrieking undistinguish'd woe,

Let it not tell your judgement I am old ; In clamours of all size, both high and low. Not age, but sorrow, over me hath power :

I might as yet have been a spreading flower, Sometimes her levell’d eyes their carriage ride, Fresh to myself, if I had self-applied As they did battery to the spheres intend; Love to myself and to no love beside. Sometime diverted their poor balls are tied To the orbed earth; sometimes they do extend But, woe is me! too early I attended Their view right on; anon their gazes lend A youthful suit-it was to gain my graceTo every place at once, and, nowhere fix’d, Of one by nature's outwards so commended, 80 The mind and sight distractedly commix'd. That maidens' eyes stuck over all his face :

Love lack'd a dwelling, and made hin her Her hair, nor loose nor tied in formal plat,

Proclaim'd in her a careless hand of pride 30 And when in his fair parts she did abide,
For some, untuck’d, descended her sheave 1 hat, She was new lodged and newly deified.
Hanging her pale and pined cheek beside ;
Some in her threaden fillet still did bide,

His browny locks did hang in crooked curls; And true to bondage would not break from And every light occasion of the wind thence,

Upon his lips their silken parcels hurls. Though slackly braided in loose negligence. What's sweet to do, to do will aptly find:

Each eye that saw him did enchant the mind, A thousand favours from a maund she drew For on his visage was in little drawn Of amber, crystal, and of beaded jet,

What largeness thinks in Paradise was sawn. Which one by one she in a river threw, Upon whose weeping margent she was set; "Small show of man was yet upon his chin; Like usury, applying wet to wet,


His phenix down began but to appear Or monarch's hands that let not bounty fall Like unshorn velvet on that termless skin Where want cries some, but where excess begs all. Whose bare out-bragg’d the web it seem'd to

wear : Of folded schedules had she many a one,

Yet show'd his visage by that cost more dear; Which she perused, sigh’d, tore, and gave the And nice affections wavering stood in doubt flood;

Is best were as it was, or best without. Crack'd many a ring of posied gold and bone, Bidding them find their sepulchres in mud; 'His qualities were beauteous as his form, Found yet moe letters sadiy penn'd in blood, For maiden-tongued he was, and thereof free; 100 With sleided silk feat and affectedly

Yet, if men moved him, was he such a storm Enswathed, and seald to curious secrecy. As oft 'twixt May and April is to see,

When winds breathe sweet, unruly though they These often bathed she in her fluxive eyes,


be. And often kiss'd, and often 'gan to tear;

His rudeness so with his authorized youth Cried “O false blood, thou register of lies, Did livery falseness in a pride of truth. What unapproved witness dost thou bear! Ink would have seem'd more black and damned 'Well could he ride, and often men would say here!'

“That horse his mettle from his rider takes :


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