Reference > William Shakespeare > The Oxford Shakespeare > Poems

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

Sonnet CXV.

“Those lines that I before have writ do lie”

THOSE lines that I before have writ do lie 
Even those that said I could not love you dearer: 
Yet then my judgment knew no reason why 
My most full flame should afterwards burn clearer. 
But reckoning Time, whose million’d accidents         5
Creep in ’twixt vows, and change decrees of kings, 
Tan sacred beauty, blunt the sharp’st intents, 
Divert strong minds to the course of altering things; 
Alas! why, fearing of Time’s tyranny, 
Might I not then say, ‘Now I love you best,’  10
When I was certain o’er incertainty, 
Crowning the present, doubting of the rest? 
  Love is a babe; then might I not say so, 
  To give full growth to that which still doth grow? 



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