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Download Shakespeare's Sonnets
Last updated: Fri, Jul 31, 2015
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Navigate this workShakespeare's Sonnets
In this fourth poem of apology for his silence, the poet argues that the beloved’s own face is so superior to any words of praise that silence is the better way.
Alack, what poverty my muse brings forth,
That, having such a scope to show her pride,
The argument all bare is of more worth
4Than when it hath my added praise beside.
O, blame me not if I no more can write!
Look in your glass, and there appears a face
That overgoes my blunt invention quite,
8Dulling my lines and doing me disgrace.
Were it not sinful, then, striving to mend,
To mar the subject that before was well?
For to no other pass my verses tend
12Than of your graces and your gifts to tell.
And more, much more, than in my verse can sit
Your own glass shows you when you look in it.