Sonnet XCVII: How like a Winter hath my Absence been
William Shakespeare, Shake-speares sonnets (London: G. Eld for T. T., 1609). STC 22353. Facs. edn. (London: J. Cape, 1925). PR 2750 B48 1609b Robarts Library
1How like a winter hath my absence been
2From thee, the pleasure of the fleeting year!
3What freezings have I felt, what dark days seen!
4What old December's bareness everywhere!
5And yet this time remov'd was summer's time,
6The teeming autumn, big with rich increase,
7Bearing the wanton burthen of the prime,
8Like widow'd wombs after their lords' decease:
9Yet this abundant issue seem'd to me
10But hope of orphans and unfather'd fruit;
11For summer and his pleasures wait on thee,
12And thou away, the very birds are mute;
13Or if they sing, 'tis with so dull a cheer
14That leaves look pale, dreading the winter's near.
Publication Start Year:
RPO poem Editors:
N. J. Endicott
2RP.1.227-28; RPO 1996-2000.