19. Devouring Time, blunt thou the lion’s paws
Devouring Time, blunt thou the lion's paws, And make the earth devour her own sweet brood; Pluck the keen teeth from the fierce tiger's jaws, And burn the long-liv'd Phoenix in her blood; Make glad and sorry seasons as thou fleets, And do whate'er thou wilt, swift-footed Time, To the wide world and all her fading sweets; But I forbid thee one more heinous crime: O, carve not with the hours my love's fair brow, Nor draw no lines there with thine antique pen! Him in thy course untainted do allow For beauty's pattern to succeeding men. Yet do thy worst, old Time! Despite thy wrong My love shall in my verse ever live young.