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Sonnet XVI

by William Shakespeare

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 your living flowers,

Much liker than your painted counterfeit:

So should the lines of life that life repair,

Which this, Time's pencil, or my pupil pen,

Neither in inward worth nor outward 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.

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