Reference > William Shakespeare > The Oxford Shakespeare > Poems

William Shakespeare (1564–1616).  The Oxford Shakespeare: Poems.  1914.

Sonnet CXXIV.

“If my dear love were but the child of state”

IF my dear love were but the child of state 
It might for Fortune’s bastard be unfather’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;         5
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 heretic, 
Which works on leases of short-number’d hours,  10
But all alone stands hugely politic, 
That it nor 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. 



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