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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 3


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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 3
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Sonnet 3



The poet urges the young man to reflect on his own image in a mirror. Just as the young man’s mother sees her own youthful self reflected in the face of her son, so someday the young man should be able to look at his son’s face and see reflected his own youth. If the young man decides to die childless, all these faces and images die with him.

Look in thy glass and tell the face thou viewest
Now is the time that face should form another,
Whose fresh repair if now thou not renewest,
4Thou dost beguile the world, unbless some mother.
For where is she so fair whose uneared womb
Disdains the tillage of thy husbandry?
Or who is he so fond will be the tomb
8Of his self-love, to stop posterity?
Thou art thy mother’s glass, and she in thee
Calls back the lovely April of her prime;
So thou through windows of thine age shalt see,
12Despite of wrinkles, this thy golden time.
 But if thou live remembered not to be,
 Die single, and thine image dies with thee.