Skip over navigation

Original Text

Modern Text

O never say that I was false of heart,
Though absence seemed my flame to qualify.
As easy might I from myself depart
As from my soul, which in thy breast doth lie.
That is my home of love; if I have ranged,
Like him that travels I return again,
Just to the time, not with the time exchanged,
So that myself bring water for my stain.
Never believe, though in my nature reigned
All frailties that besiege all kinds of blood,
That it could so preposterously be stained
To leave for nothing all thy sum of good.
  For nothing this wide universe I call,
  Save thou, my rose; in it thou art my all.
Oh, never say that I was unfaithful to you in my heart, even though my absence from you suggested that my love had weakened. I can’t separate myself from my feelings for you anymore than I can separate myself from myself. You are my home, and if I strayed away from you, like a traveler I have returned again, right at the appointed time, with my feelings unchanged, so I’m making up for my misdeed. Even though I have the same weaknesses in my nature as everyone made of flesh and blood, don’t ever believe that I could be so morally compromised as to leave someone as good as you in exchange for something worthless. The entire universe except for you, my love, means nothing to me. You’re everything to me.

More Help

Previous Next
s