Reference > William Shakespeare > The Oxford Shakespeare > Poems

William Shakespeare (1564–1616).  The Oxford Shakespeare: Poems.  1914.

Sonnet CLI.

“Love is too young to know what conscience is”

LOVE is too young to know what conscience is; 
Yet who knows not conscience is born of love? 
Then, gentle cheater, urge not my amiss, 
Lest guilty of my faults thy sweet self prove: 
For, thou betraying me, I do betray         5
My nobler part to my gross body’s treason; 
My soul doth tell my body that he may 
Triumph in love; flesh stays no further reason, 
But rising at thy name doth point out thee 
As his triumphant prize. Proud of this pride,  10
He is contented thy poor drudge to be, 
To stand in thy affairs, fall by thy side. 
  No want of conscience hold it that I call 
  Her ‘love’ for whose dear love I rise and fall. 



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