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Is it thy will thy image should keep open
My heavy eyelids to the weary night?
Dost thou desire my slumbers should be broken,
While shadows like to thee do mock my sight?
Is it thy spirit that thou send’st from thee
So far from home into my deeds to pry,
To find out shames and idle hours in me,
The scope and tenor of thy jealousy?
O no; thy love, though much, is not so great.
It is my love that keeps mine eye awake,
Mine own true love that doth my rest defeat,
To play the watchman ever for thy sake.
  For thee watch I whilst thou dost wake elsewhére,
  From me far off, with others all too near.
Was it your intention that I should stay awake all night thinking about you? Do you want my sleep to be interrupted while I’m tantalized by mental images of you? Are you sending your spirit far from its home to pry into my dealings, to find out the shameful things I’ve been up to in idle hours? Are you jealous? Oh, no: Though you love me a great deal, you don’t love me that much. It’s my love for you that’s keeping me awake. My own true love keeps me from sleeping—staying up worrying about you. I stay up for you, while you are awake somewhere else: far away from me, but all too close to certain other people.

Popular pages: Shakespeare’s Sonnets