What’s in the brain that ink may character
Which hath not figured to thee my true spirit?
What’s new to speak, what now to register,
That may express my love or thy dear merit?
Nothing, sweet boy; but yet, like prayers divine,
I must each day say o'er the very same,
Counting no old thing old, thou mine, I thine,
Ev'n as when first I hallowed thy fair name.
So that eternal love in love’s fresh case
Weighs not the dust and injury of age,
Nor gives to necessary wrinkles place,
But makes antiquity for aye his page,
Finding the first conceit of love there bred
Where time and outward form would show it dead.
What could I possibly write that I haven’t written already to show you how constant and faithful my soul is? What else is there to say, what new thing can I invent, that would express either my love or your value? There’s nothing, sweet boy. And yet, just as with prayers to God, I have to keep saying the same thing over and over again each day, without thinking that these old praises are old. You’re mine, I’m yours, just like when I first honored your name in writing. My love for you, which is everlasting, doesn’t care about the effects of age, nor does it acknowledge your wrinkles, but always inspires me to describe my feelings as if they were still young. I see in you the original source of my love for you, even though your age and appearance would suggest that the reason for that love is dead.