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STANZAS TO THE MARQUISE, by                    
First Line: Marquise, if on my face you spy
Last Line: Whose printed word may bless or blight you.
Subject(s): Aging; Beauty; Time

MARQUISE, if on my face you spy
Some trace of Time's unsparing graver,
Remember when as old as I
You'll hardly showe a fairer favour.

For Time doth take in ruthless holde
The loveliest things that we do cherish;
As he hath lined my forehead old,
So he will make your roses perish.

The same swift planets in their course
Draw on our dayes and nights unceasing;
My face was once as fair as yours,
And yours must soon like mine be creasing.

Yet have I dazzling charms to fright
The stern aspéct of Time's deploying,
And give me courage to despite
The onward march of his destroying.

Your charms by all are worshippéd;
But those that you esteem so lightly
May well endure when yours are dead,
And all your beauty growne unsightly.

They may bestowe undying fame
On eyes that unto me are dearest,
And in a thousand yeares proclaim
The beauty that for me thou wearest.

And that new race beyond the grave
To what I write shall render credit,
And you shall have no beauty save
As I alone have sung or said it.

Then ponder well, my fair Marquise:
Though silvery hairs do so affright you,
Yet such as I 'twere well to please
Whose printed word may bless or blight you.

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