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Whereon the stars in secret influence comment :
When I perceive, that men as plants increase,
Cheered and check'd even by the self-same sky :
Vaunt in their youthful sap, at height decrease,
And wear the brave state out of memory :
Then the conceit of this inconstant stay,
Sets you most rich in youth before my sight,
Where wasteful time debateth with decay,
To change your day of youth to sullied night,
And all in war with time for love of you,
As he takes from you, I engraft you new.
GOOD ADMONITION. But wherefore do not you a mightier way, Make war upon this bloody tyrant, Time? And fortify yourself in your decay, With means more blessed than my barren rhyme : Now stand you on the top of happy hours, And many maiden gardens yet unset, With virtuous wish would bear you living flowers, Much liker than your painted counterfeit.2 So should the lines of life that life repair, 3 Which this (time's pencil) or my pupil pen, Neither in inward worth, nor out ward fair, Can make you live yourself in eyes of men.
To give away yourself, keeps yourself still,
And you must live, drawn by your own sweet skill.
Who will believe my verse, in time to come,
If it were fill'd with your most high deserts?
Tho' yet, heaven knows, it is but as a tomb,
Which hides your life, and shows not half your parts.
If I could write the beauty of your eyes,
And in fresh numbers number all your graces ;
The age to come would say, this poet lies,
Such heavenly touches ne'er touch'd earthly faces.
So should my papers (yellow'd with their age)
Be scorn'd, like old men of less truth than tongue ;
And your true rights be term'd a poet's rage,
And stretched metre of an antick song.
But were some child of yours alive that time,
You should live twice, in it and in my rhyme.
 A counterfeit formerly significd a portrait.
 The lines of life, perhaps are living features.
Lo! in the orient when the gracious light
Lifts up his burning head, each under eye
Doth homage to his new appearing sight,
Serving with looks his sacred majesty ;
And having climb'd the steep-up heavenly hill,
Resembling strong youth in his middle age,
Yet mortal looks adore his beauty still,
Attending on his golden pilgrimage.
But when from high most pitch with weary care,
Like feeble age he reeleth from the day ;
The eyes ('force duteous)'s now converted are
From his low track, and look another way.
So thou, thyself, outgoing in thy noon,
Unlook'd on diest, unless thou get a son.
Unthrifty loveliness, why dost thou spend
Upon thyself thy beauty's legacy ?
Nature's bequest gives nothing, but doth lend,
And being frank, she lends to those are free.
Then, beauteous niggard, why dost thou abuse
The bounteous largess given thee to give ?
Profitless usurer, why dost thou use
So great a sum of sums, yet canst not live ?
For having traffic with thyself alone,
Thou of thyself thy sweet self dost deceive ;
Then how when nature calls thee to begone,
What acceptable audit canst thou leave ?
Thy unus'd beauty must be tomb'd with thee,
Which used lives th' executor to be. Those hours that with gentle work did frame The lovely gaze, where every eye doth dwell, Will play the tyrants to the very fame, And that unfair, which fairly doth excel. For never-resting time leads summer on To hideous winter, and confounds him there ; Sap check'd with fros and lusty leaves quite gone: Beauty o'er-snow'd, and barrenness every where.
 Read weary car.
ANON.  For force duteous, read fore duteous.
Then were not summer's distillation left
A liquid prisoner, pent in walls of glass,
Beauty's effect with beauty were bereft,
Nor it, nor no remembrance what it was.
But flowers distill’d, tho' they with winter meet,
Lose but their show, their substance still lives sweet.
Then let not winter's ragged hand deface
In thee thy summer, ere thou be distillid ;
Make sweet some vial, treasure thou some place
With beauty's treasure, ere it be self-killid:
That use is not forbidden usury,
Which happies those that pay the willing loan ;
That's for thyself to breed another thee,
Or ten times happier, be it ten for one :
Ten times thyself were happier than thou art,
If ten of thine ten times refigur’d thee ;
Then what could death do, if thou should'st depart,
Leaving thee living in posterity ?
Be not self-will’d, for thou art much too fair
To be death's conquest, and make worms thine heir.
AN INVITATION TO MARRIAGE.
Music to hear, 6 why hear'st thou music sadly?
Sweets with sweets war not, joy delights in joy :
Why lov'st thou that, which thou receiv'st not gladly?
Or else receiv'st with pleasure thine annoy. ?
If the true concord of ell-tuned sounds,
By unions married, do offend thine ear,
They do but sweetly chide thee, who confounds
In singleness, the parts that thou should'st bear.
Mark how one string, sweet husband to another,
Strikes each in each, by mutual ordering ;
Resembling sire, and child, and happy mother,
Who all in one, one pleasing note do sing :
Whose speechless song, being many, seeming one,
Sings this to thee, thou single wilt prove none.
Is it for fear to wet a widow's eye,
That thou consum'st thyself in single life?
Ah ! if thou issueless shall hap to die,
The world will wail thee like a makeless wife :
 Thou whom to hear is music, &c.
The world will be thy widow, and still weep,
That thou no form of thee hast left behind;
When every private widow well may keep,
By children's eyes, her husband's shape in mind.
Look what an unthrift in the world doth spend,
Shifts but his place, for still the world enjoys it ;
But beauty's waste hath in the world an end,
And kept unus'd, the usurer so destroys it.
No love towards others in that bosom sits,
That on himself such murd'rous shame commits.
For shame! deny that thou bear'st love to any,
Who for thyself art so unprovident ;
Grant, if thou wilt, thou art belov'd of many,
But that thou none lov'st, is most evident :
For thou art so possess'd with murd'rous hate,
That'gainst thyself thou stick'st not to conspire,
Seeking that beauteous roof to ruinate,
Which, to repair, should be thy chief desire.
O change thy thought, that I may change my mind !
Shall hate be fairer lodg'd than gentle love ?
Be, as thy presence is, gracious and kind,
Or, to thyself, at least, kind-hearted prove.
Make thee another self, for love of me,
That beauty still may live in thine or thee. As fast as thou shalt wane, so fast thou grow'st In one of thine, from that which thou departest; And that fresh blood which youngly thou bestow'st, Thou may'st callthine, when thou from youth convertest. Herein live wisdom, beauty, and increase ; Without this, folly, age, and cold decay ; If all were minded so, the times should cease, And threescore years, would make the world away. Let those whom nature hath not made for store, Harsh, featureless, and rude, barrenly perish : Look whom she best endow'd, she gave the more ; Which bounteous gift, thou should'st in bounty cherish :
She carv'd thee for her seal, and meant thereby,
Thou should'st print more, not let that copy die.
When I do count the clock, that tells the time,
And see the brave day sunk in hideous night ;
When I behold the violet past prime,
And sable curls are silver'd o'er with white ;
When lofty trees I see barren of leaves,
Which erst from heat did canopy the herd,
And summer's green all girded up in sheaves,
Borne np the bier, with white and bristly beard ;
Then of thy beanty do I question make,
That thou among the wastes of time must go,
Since sweets and beauties do themselves forsake,
And die as fast as they see others grow;
And nothing 'gainst Time's scythe can make defence,
Save breed, to brave him when he takes thee hence.
When my love swears that she is made of truth,
I do believe her. (tho' I know she lies)
That she might think me some untutor'd youth,
Unskilful in the world's false forgeries.
Thus vainly thinking, that she thinks me young,
Altho' I know my years be past the best ;
I, smiling, credit her false speaking tongue,
Out-facing faults in love, with love's ill rest.
But wherefore says my love, that she is young?
And wherefore say not I, that I am old ?
O love's best habit is a smoothing tongue,
And age (in love) loves not to have years told.
Therefore I'll lie with love, and love with me,
Since that our faults in love thus smother'd be,
Two loves I have, of comfort and despair,
That, like two spirits, do suggest me still :
My better angel is a man, (right fair)
My worser spirit a woman (colour'a ill.)
To win me soon to hell, my female evil
Tempteth my better angel from my side,
And would corrupt my saint to be a devil,
Wooing his purity with her fair pride
And whether that my angel be turn'd fiend,
Suspect I may, yet not directly tell ;
For being both to me, both to each friend,
guess one angel in another's hell.
The truth I shall not know, but live in doubt,
Till my bad angel fire my good one out.