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The Sonnets: 117

By William Shakespeare


Accuse me thus: that I have scanted all,

Wherein I should your great deserts repay,

Forgot upon your dearest love to call,

Whereto all bonds do tie me day by day;

That I have frequent been with unknown minds,

And given to time your own dear-purchas'd right;

That I have hoisted sail to all the winds

Which should transport me farthest from your sight.

Book both my wilfulness and errors down,

And on just proof surmise, accumulate;

Bring me within the level of your frown,

But shoot not at me in your waken'd hate;

Since my appeal says I did strive to prove

The constancy and virtue of your love.