I urge you to pick up a copy of the sonnets and read them all! If you have a personal favourite let us know in a comment below…. Lo, thus, by day my limbs, by night my mind, For thee, and for myself, no quiet find. Thou art more lovely and more temperate. So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, So long lives this, and this gives life to thee. Sonnet 3 Let me not to the marriage of true minds Admit impediments; love is not love Which alters when it alteration finds, Or bends with the remover to remove.
If this be error and upon me proved, I never writ, nor no man ever loved. Sonnet 4 To me, fair friend, you never can be old, For as you were when first your eye I eyed, Such seems your beauty still. I have seen roses damasked, red and white, But no such roses see I in her cheeks, And in some perfumes is there more delight Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks. I love to hear her speak, yet well I know That music hath a far more pleasing sound. I grant I never saw a goddess go; My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground.
And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare As any she belied with false compare.
Sonnet 6 The expense of spirit in a waste of shame Is lust in action, and, till action, lust Is perjured, murderous, bloody, full of blame, Savage, extreme, rude, cruel, not to trust, Enjoyed no sooner but despised straight, Past reason hunted, and no sooner had Past reason hated as a swallowed bait On purpose laid to make the taker mad; Mad in pursuit and in possession so, Had, having, and in quest to have, extreme, A bliss in proof, and proved, a very woe, Before, a joy proposed; behind, a dream.
All this the world well knows, yet none knows well To shun the heaven that leads men to this hell. O fearful meditation! Or what strong hand can hold his swift foot back? Or who his spoil of beauty can forbid? O, none, unless this miracle have might, That in black ink my love may still shine bright.
Thus do I pine and surfeit day by day, Or gluttoning on all, or all away.
O, let my books be then the eloquence And dumb presagers of my speaking breast, Who plead for love and look for recompense More than that tongue that more hath more expressed. Sonnet 80 11 O, how I faint when I of you do write, Knowing a better spirit doth use your name, And in the praise thereof spends all his might To make me tongue-tied speaking of your fame. But since your worth, wide as the ocean is, The humble as the proudest sail doth bear, My saucy bark inferior far to his On your broad main doth wilfully appear.
Your shallowest help will hold me up afloat Whilst he upon your soundless deep doth ride; Or being wrecked, I am a worthless boat, He of tall building and of goodly pride. Then if he thrive and I be cast away, The worst was this: my love was my decay.
Shakespeare was educated at the King's New School, a free chartered grammar school that was located in Stratford. By James Longenbach. Arthur F. Renaissance poetry. Fall Poems.
For all that beauty that doth cover thee Is but the seemly raiment of my heart, Which in thy breast doth live, as thine in me. How can I then be elder than thou art? O therefore, love, be of thyself so wary As I, not for myself, but for thee will, Bearing thy heart, which I will keep so chary As tender nurse her babe from faring ill.
A full introduction discusses his development as a poet, and how the poems relate to the plays, and detailed notes explain the language and allusions. Shakespeare became famous as a dazzling poet before most people even knew that he wrote plays. His sonnets are the English language's most extraordinary.
Sonnet 3 13 Look in thy glass and tell the face thou viewest, Now is the time that face should form another, Whose fresh repair if now thou not renewest, Thou dost beguile the world, unbless some mother. For where is she so fair whose uneared womb Disdains the tillage of thy husbandry? Sonnet To me, fair friend, you never can be old.
Sonnet When in the chronicle of wasted time. Sonnet Not mine own fears, nor the prophetic soul. Sonnet O! Sonnet Alas, 'tis true I have gone here and there. Sonnet O, for my sake do you with Fortune chide,. Sonnet Let me not to the marriage of true minds.
Sonnet 'Tis better to be vile than vile esteemed. Sonnet No, Time, thou shalt not boast that I do change.
Sonnet Th'expense of spirit in a waste of shame. Sonnet My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun. Sonnet Beshrew that heart that makes my heart to groan. Sonnet Whoever hath her wish, thou hast thy Will. Sonnet When my love swears that she is made of truth. Sonnet O, call not me to justify the wrong.
Sonnet In faith, I do not love thee with mine eyes. Sonnet Love is my sin, and thy dear virtue hate. Sonnet Two loves I have of comfort and despair. Sonnet Poor soul, the centre of my sinful earth,. Sonnet My love is as a fever, longing still.
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