The Sonnets: 42

By William Shakespeare
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The Independent Culture

That thou hast her it is not all my grief,

And yet it may be said I loved her dearly;

That she hath thee is of my wailing chief,

A loss in love that touches me more nearly.

Loving offenders thus I will excuse ye:

Thou dost love her, because thou know'st I love her;

And for my sake even so doth she abuse me,

Suffering my friend for my sake to approve her.

If I lose thee, my loss is my love's gain,

And losing her, my friend hath found that loss;

Both find each other, and I lose both twain,

And both for my sake lay on me this cross:

But here's the joy; my friend and I are one;

Sweet flattery! then she loves but me alone.

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