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Sonnet 75

a cornucopia of a book
Read by Claire Marchionne
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A. L. Rowse in his Shakespeare's Sonnets writes: 'The filching age' describes the situation aptly, for there was keen competition for a patron, when it was sometimes a question of survival as a poet.  This sonnet inaugurates a new sequence, in which the literary situation becomes the dominating them: the appearance of a rival poet on the scene, who threatens to take Shakespeare's place in his favour.

So are you to my thoughts as food to life,
Or as sweet-season'd showers are to the ground;
And for the peace of you I hold such strife
As 'twixt a miser and his wealth is found.
Now proud as an enjoyer, and anon
Doubting the filching age will steal his treasure;
Now counting best to be with you alone,
Then better'd that the world may see my pleasure:
Sometime all full with feasting on your sight,
And by and by clean starved for a look;
Possessing or pursuing no delight,
Save what is had, or must from you be took.
  Thus do I pine and surfeit day by day,
  Or gluttoning on all, or all away.

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