Reference > William Shakespeare > The Oxford Shakespeare > Poems

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

Sonnet XXII.

“My glass shall not persuade me I am old”

MY glass shall not persuade me I am old 
So long as youth and thou are of one date; 
But when in thee time’s furrows I behold, 
Then look I death my days should expiate. 
For all that beauty that doth cover thee         5
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;  10
Bearing thy heart, which I will keep so chary 
As tender nurse her babe from faring ill. 
  Presume not on thy heart when mine is slain; 
  Thou gav’st me thine, not to give back again. 



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