Original Text

Modern Text

Alas ’tis true, I have gone here and there,
And made myself a motley to the view,
Gored mine own thoughts, sold cheap what is most dear,
Made old offenses of affections new.
Most true it is that I have looked on truth
Askance and strangely; but by all above,
These blenches gave my heart another youth,
And worse essays proved thee my best of love.
Now all is done, save what shall have no end;
Mine appetite I never more will grind
On newer proof, to try an older friend,
A god in love, to whom I am confined.
  Then give me welcome, next my heav'n the best,
  Ev'n to thy pure and most most loving breast.
Alas, it’s true, I have gone here and there, and made myself look foolish, and allowed my thoughts to be divided, and acted as if the most valuable thing were worthless, and used my new friends to commit the old infidelities I’ve committed before. It’s very true that I’ve treated true love strangely and with disdain. But I swear by heaven, these moments when I’ve swerved aside have made my heart young again, and by trying out other people I’ve proved to myself that you’re the best person I love. Now I’ve finished with everything except for our love, which will have no end. I will no longer whet my appetite for new lovers, causing suffering to my old friend, the god of love to whom I’m now limiting myself. So welcome me back into your pure and loving heart; to me, you’re the next best thing to heaven.

Popular pages: Shakespeare’s Sonnets