1 " Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate: Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer's lease hath all too short a date: Sometimes too hot the eye of heaven shines, And too often is his gold complexion dimm'd: And every fair from fair sometimes declines, By chance or natures changing course untrimm'd; By thy eternal summer shall not fade, Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest; Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade, When in eternal lines to time thou growest: So long as men can breathe or eyes can see, So long lives this and this gives life to thee. "
2 " Love is not loveWhich alters when it alteration finds,Or bends with the remover to remove.O no, it is an ever-fixed markThat looks on tempests and is never shaken;It is the star to every wand'ring bark,Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken." "
3 " That time of year thou mayst in me beholdWhen yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hangUpon those boughs which shake against the cold,Bare ruin'd choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.In me thou seest the twilight of such dayAs after sunset fadeth in the west,Which by and by black night doth take away,Death's second self, that seals up all in rest.In me thou see'st the glowing of such fireThat on the ashes of his youth doth lie,As the death-bed whereon it must expireConsumed with that which it was nourish'd by.This thou perceivest, which makes thy love more strong,To love that well which thou must leave ere long. "
4 " No longer mourn for me when I am deadThan you shall hear the surly sullen bellGive warning to the world that I am fledFrom this vile world, with vilest worms to dwell;Nay, if you read this line, remember notThe hand that writ it; for I love you so,That I in your sweet thoughts would be forgot,If thinking on me then would make you woe. "
7 " My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun;Coral is far more red than her lips' red;If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.I have seen roses damask'd, red and white,But no such roses see I in her cheeks;And in some perfumes is there more delightThan in the breath that from my mistress reeks.I love to hear her speak, yet well I knowThat music hath a far more pleasing sound;I grant I never saw a goddess go;My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground: And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare As any she belied with false compare. "
9 " When I do count the clock that tells the time,And see the brave day sunk in hideous night;When I behold the violet past prime,And sable curls all silver'd o'er with white;When lofty trees I see barren of leavesWhich erst from heat did canopy the herd,And summer's green all girded up in sheavesBorne on the bier with white and bristly beard,Then of thy beauty do I question make,That thou among the wastes of time must go,Since sweets and beauties do themselves forsakeAnd die as fast as they see others grow;And nothing 'gainst Time's scythe can make defenceSave breed, to brave him when he takes thee hence. "
10 " Often, beyond the next turning, footfalls of a herd galloping across stone were heard, or further in the distance, with reassuring grunts, a wild boar could be seen, trotting with steady stride along the edge of the road with her sow and a whole procession of young in tow. And then one's heart beat faster upon advancing a little into the subtle light: one might have said that the path had suddenly become wild, thick with grass, its dark paving-slabs engulfed by nettles, blackthorn and sloe, so that it mingled up time past rather than crossing country-side, and perhaps it was going to issue forth, in the chiaroscuro of thicket smelling of moistened down and fresh grass, into one of those glades where animals spoke to men. "
11 " It was a fossilized path: the will which had cut this gash out of these solitary places so that the blood and sap would flow there was long since dead - and dead too were the circumstances which had guided this will. A whitish and indurated scar remained, gradually gnawed away by the earth like a flesh that heals itself, yet its direction was still vaguely cut into the horizon; a language and crepuscular sign rather than a way forward - a worn-out lifeline which still vegetated through the fallow land as it does on the palm of a hand. It was so old that, since it had been constructed, the very configuration of the land must have changed imperceptibly. "
14 " What is your substance, whereof are you made,That millions of strange shadows on you tend?Since everyone hath every one, one shade,And you, but one, can every shadow lend.Describe Adonis, and the counterfeitIs poorly imitated after you.On Helen’s cheek all art of beauty set,And you in Grecian tires are painted new.Speak of the spring and foison of the year;The one doth shadow of your beauty show,The other as your bounty doth appear,And you in every blessèd shape we know.In all external grace you have some part,But you like none, none you, for constant heart. "
15 " Not marble nor the gilded monumentsOf princes, shall outlive this powerful rhyme,But you shall shine more bright in these contentsThan unswept stone, besmeared with sluttish time.When wasteful war shall statues overturnAnd broils roots out the work of masonry,Nor mars his sword nor war's quick fire shall burnThe living record of your memory.'Gainst death and all-oblivious enmityShall you pace forth; your praise shall still find roomEven in the eyes of all posterityThat wear this world out to the ending doom.So, till judgement that yourself arise,You in this, and dwell in lovers eyes. "
16 " Watch a French housewife as she makes her way slowly along the loaded stalls… searching for the peak of ripeness and flavor… What you are seeing is a true artist at work, patiently assembling all the materials of her craft, just as the painter squeezes oil colors onto his palette ready to create a masterpiece. "