The Sonnets by William Shakespeare

Sonnet 81

read by Simon Russell Beale

Or I shall live, your epitaph to make;

Or you survive, when I in earth am rotten;

From hence your memory death cannot take,

Although in me each part will be forgotten.

5Your name from hence immortal life shall have,

Though I, once gone, to all the world must die;

The earth can yield me but a common grave,

When you entombed in men’s eyes shall lie.

Your monument shall be my gentle verse,

10Which eyes not yet created shall o’er-read,

And tongues to be your being shall rehearse,

When all the breathers of this world are dead.

You still shall live, such virtue hath my pen,

Where breath most breathes, even in the mouths of men.

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