Verse > Anthologies > Elizabethan Sonnets > Astrophel and Stella
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Seccombe and Arber, comps.  Elizabethan Sonnets.  1904.
 
Astrophel and Stella
XXXVIII. This night, while sleep begins with heavy wings
Sir Philip Sidney (1554–1586)
 
THIS night, while sleep begins with heavy wings
To hatch mine eyes, and that unbitted thought
Doth fall to stray; and my chief powers are brought
To leave the sceptre of all subject things:
  The first that straight my fancy’s error brings        5
Unto my mind, is STELLA’s image; wrought
By LOVE’s own self, but with so curious draught,
That she, methinks, not only shines but sings:
  I start! look! hark! but what in closed up sense
Was held, in open sense it flies away;        10
Leaving me nought but wailing eloquence.
  I, seeing better sights in sight’s decay;
Called it anew, and wooed sleep again:
But him her host, that unkind guest had slain.
 
 
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