Time to let go of tired assumptions about these remarkable poems and experience them afresh, like waves breaking on the shore, like the ‘rarities of nature’s truth.’
Today’s sonnet is read by Professor Stanley Wells C.B.E.
Like as the waves make towards the pebbled shore,
So do our minutes hasten to their end,
Each changing place with that which goes before;
In sequent toil all forwards do contend.
Nativity, once in the main of light,
Crawls to maturity, wherewith being crowned
Crooked eclipses ’gainst his glory fight,
And time that gave doth now his gift confound.
Time doth transfix the flourish set on youth,
And delves the parallels in beauty’s brow;
Feeds on the rarities of nature’s truth,
And nothing stands but for his scythe to mow.
And yet to times in hope my verse shall stand,
Praising thy worth despite his cruel hand.
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Listen to the same sonnet being read by a student at the University of Tubingen by clicking here.
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