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English Poetry I: From Chaucer to Gray.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.

William Shakespeare

100. Love’s Perjuries

ON a day, alack the day!

Love, whose month is ever May,

Spied a blossom passing fair

Playing in the wanton air;

Through the velvet leaves the wind,

All unseen, ’gan passage find;

That the lover, sick to death,

Wish’d himself the heaven’s breath.

Air, quoth he, thy cheeks may blow;

Air, would I might triumph so!

But, alack, my hand is sworn

Ne’er to pluck thee from thy thorn:

Vow, alack, for youth unmeet;

Youth so apt to pluck a sweet.

Do not call it sin in me

That I am forsworn for thee:

Thou for whom e’en Jove would swear

Juno but an Ethiope were,

And deny himself for Jove,

Turning mortal for thy love.