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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 102


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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 102
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Sonnet 102



The poet defends his silence, arguing that it is a sign not of lessened love but of his desire, in a world where pleasures have grown common, to avoid wearying the beloved with poems of praise.

My love is strengthened, though more weak in seeming;
I love not less, though less the show appear.
That love is merchandized whose rich esteeming
4The owner’s tongue doth publish everywhere.
Our love was new, and then but in the spring,
When I was wont to greet it with my lays,
As Philomel in summer’s front doth sing,
8And stops his pipe in growth of riper days.
Not that the summer is less pleasant now
Than when her mournful hymns did hush the night,
But that wild music burdens every bough,
12And sweets grown common lose their dear delight.
 Therefore, like her, I sometime hold my tongue,
 Because I would not dull you with my song.