The forward violet thus did I chide, Sweet thief, whence didst thou steal thy sweet that smells, If not from my love's breath? The purple pride Which on thy soft check for complexion dwells, In my love's veins thou hast too grossly dyed. The lily I condemned for thy hand, And buds of marjoram had stol'n thy hair, The roses fearfully on thorns did stand, One blushing shame, another white despair: A third nor red, nor white, had stol'n of both, And to his robbery had annexed thy breath, But for his theft in pride of all his growth A vengeful canker eat him up to death. More flowers I noted, yet I none could see, But sweet, or colour it had stol'n from thee.
Return to the William Shakespeare Home Page