Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Hardy M. Cook
Not Peer Reviewed

The Passionate Pilgrim (Octavo, 1599)


1WHen my Loue sweares that she is made of truth,
I doe beleeue her (though I know she lies)
That she might thinke me some vntutor'd youth,
Vnskilfull in the worlds false forgeries.
5Thus vainly thinking that she thinkes me young,
Although I know my yeares be past the best:
I smiling, credite her false speaking toung,
Outfacing faults in Loue, with loues ill rest.
But wherefore sayes my Loue that she is young?
10And wherefore say not I, that I am old?
O, Loues best habite is a soothing toung,
And Age (in Loue) loues not to haue yeares told.
Therfore Ile lye with Loue, and Loue with me,
Since that our faults in Loue thus smother'd be.
15TWo Loues I haue, of Comfort, and Despaire,
That like two Spirits, do suggest me still:
My better Angell is a Man (right faire)
My worser spirite a Woman (colour'd ill.)
To winne me soone to hell, my Female euill
20Tempteth my better Angell from my side,
And would corrupt my Saint to be a Diuell,
Wooing his purity with her faire pride.
And whether that my Angell be turnde feend,
Suspect I may (yet not directly tell:
25For being both to me: both, to each friend,
I ghesse one Angell in anothers hell:
The truth I shall not know, but liue in doubt,
Till my bad Angell fire my good one out.
DId not the heauenly Rhetorike of thine eie,
30Gainst whom the world could not hold argumēt,
Perswade my hart to this false periurie:
Vowes for thee broke deserue not punishment.
A woman I forswore: but I will proue
Thou being a Goddesse, I forswore not thee:
35My vow was earthly, thou a heauenly loue,
Thy grace being gainde, cures all disgrace in me.
My vow was breath, and breath a vapor is,
Then thou faire Sun, that on this earth doth shine,
Exhale this vapor vow, in thee it is:
40If broken, then it is no fault of mine.
If by me broke, what foole is not so wise
To breake an Oath, to win a Paradise?