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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 64


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Shakespeare's Sonnets - Sonnet 64
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Sonnet 64



Signs of the destructive power of time and decay—such as fallen towers and eroded beaches—force the poet to admit that the beloved will also be lost to him and to mourn this anticipated loss.

When I have seen by Time’s fell hand defaced
The rich proud cost of outworn buried age;
When sometime lofty towers I see down-razed
4And brass eternal slave to mortal rage;
When I have seen the hungry ocean gain
Advantage on the kingdom of the shore,
And the firm soil win of the wat’ry main,
8Increasing store with loss and loss with store;
When I have seen such interchange of state,
Or state itself confounded to decay,
Ruin hath taught me thus to ruminate,
12That Time will come and take my love away.
 This thought is as a death, which cannot choose
 But weep to have that which it fears to lose.