Shakespeare's Sonnets Translation Sonnet 22
My glass shall not persuade me I am old So long as youth and thou are of one date; But when in thee time’s furrows I behold, Then look I death my days should expiate. For all that beauty that doth cover thee Is but the seemly raiment of my heart, Which in thy breast doth live, as thine in me. How can I then be elder than thou art? O therefore, love, be of thyself so wary As I, not for myself, but for thee will, Bearing thy heart, which I will keep so chary As tender nurse her babe from faring ill. Presume not on thy heart when mine is slain; Thou gav’st me thine not to give back again.
My mirror will not convince me that I am old
As long as you are youthful;
But when I see the marks of time on your body,
Then I expect that death will end my days.
Because the beauty that covers you
Is the clothing that my heart wears,
And my heart lives in your chest, as yours lives in mine.
How can I then be older than you are?
Therefore, my love, take care of yourself
As I will take care, not for my sake, but for yours,
Carrying your heart, which I will be so careful of
Like a tender nurse keeping her baby from harm.
Do not presume you can take your heart back when mine has been slain;
You gave me yours not to give back again.
LitCharts A+ members also get exclusive access to:
- Downloadable translations of every Shakespeare play and sonnet
- Downloads of 845 LitCharts Lit Guides
- Explanations and citation info for 19,733 quotes covering 845 books
- Teacher Editions for every Lit Guide
- PDFs defining 136 key Lit Terms