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How heavy do I journey on the way,
When what I seek, my weary travel's end,
Doth teach that ease and that repose to say
'Thus far the miles are measured from thy friend!'
The beast that bears me, tired with my woe,
Plods dully on, to bear that weight in me,
As if by some instinct the wretch did know
His rider lov'd not speed, being made from thee:
The bloody spur cannot provoke him on
That sometimes anger thrusts into his hide,
Which heavily he answers with a groan,
More sharp to me than spurring to his side;
   For that same groan doth put this in my mind,
   My grief lies onward, and my joy behind.


L. The poet finds the journey which he is taking tedious and wearisome. The ease and repose looked for at the end of each day's travel are lost in the thought that every stage marks so many miles farther away from his friend. The very beast on which he rides sympathises with his rider, as if by instinct, and plods heavily on, answering, when spurred, with a groan, a groan which reminds his rider of his own sorrow.

3. That ease and that repose to say, &c. A bold metaphor, to make the halting-station, or the rest obtained there, speak.

6. Dully. Q. "duly."

How to cite this article:
Shakespeare, William. Sonnets. Ed. Thomas Tyler. London: D. Nutt, 1890. Shakespeare Online. 10 Jan. 2014. < >.

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