William Shakespeare

(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616 / Warwickshire)

Sonnet Cxxxix

Poem by William Shakespeare

O, call not me to justify the wrong
That thy unkindness lays upon my heart;
Wound me not with thine eye but with thy tongue;
Use power with power and slay me not by art.
Tell me thou lovest elsewhere, but in my sight,
Dear heart, forbear to glance thine eye aside:
What need'st thou wound with cunning when thy might
Is more than my o'er-press'd defense can bide?
Let me excuse thee: ah! my love well knows
Her pretty looks have been mine enemies,
And therefore from my face she turns my foes,
That they elsewhere might dart their injuries:
Yet do not so; but since I am near slain,
Kill me outright with looks and rid my pain.

Comments about Sonnet Cxxxix by William Shakespeare

  • Fabrizio FrosiniFabrizio Frosini (1/11/2016 4:13:00 PM)

    The poet declines to excuse the cruelty of his beloved, which according to the traditions of the sonneteers he should be prepared to do. Nevertheless half way through the sonnet he changes his mind and finds justification for her actions.(Report)Reply

    15 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Fabrizio FrosiniFabrizio Frosini (1/11/2016 4:12:00 PM)

    The initial tone contrasts sharply with the readiness the poet showed to defend the beloved youth who, it seems, was all too ready to betray him. (40-42,88-9,95-6) . Here the mistress seems to be keen to give her attentions to other admirers, and does not stint to do so even in his presence, so that the pain is the double one of having her disdain him, and seeing how much she is pleased to flirt with and entrap other men.

    15 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Brian JaniBrian Jani (4/26/2014 10:18:00 AM)

    Awesome I like this poem, check mine out(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    2 person did not like.
  • * Sunprincess * (11/18/2013 9:36:00 PM)

    wish I could write lines like these...
    `Yet do not so; but since I am near slain,
    Kill me outright with looks and rid my pain. ~(Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
Read all 4 comments »

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Read poems about / on: power, pain, heart, sonnet, wind

Poem Submitted: Friday, May 18, 2001

Poem Edited: Friday, May 18, 2001

[Report Error]