Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Sonnet CXXIII (123)

No! Time, thou shalt not boast that I do change:
Thy pyramids built up with newer might
To me are nothing novel, nothing strange;
They are but dressings of a former sight.
Our dates are brief, and therefore we admire
What thou dost foist upon us that is old;
And rather make them born to our desire, 
Than think that we before have heard them told.
Thy registers and thee I both defy,
Not wondering at the present nor the past,
For thy records and what we see doth lie,
Made more or less by thy continual haste.
   This I do vow and this shall ever be;
   I will be true, despite thy scythe and thee. 

2. Thy pyramids. To be understood of anything grand and stupendous. Newer might. Power lately exercised. 

5. Dates. Terms of existence. Admire. Wonder at. 

7. And rather make them born to our desire. And prefer to regard them as really new, just "born." Q. "borne." 

11. What we see do lie. By pretending to be new when not really so. 

12. Made more or less by thy continual haste. Thus preventing an accurate register from being kept. 

14. Scythe. Q. "syeth."

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