Sonnet Cxxxix

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.

by William Shakespeare

Comments (4)

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.
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. shakespeares-sonnets.com
Awesome I like this poem, check mine out
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. ~