William Shakespeare. 1564–1616

Sonnet XLIV.

“If the dull substance of my flesh were thought”

IF the dull substance of my flesh were thought  
Injurious distance should not stop my way;  
For then, despite of space, I would be brought,  
From limits far remote, where thou dost stay.  
No matter then although my foot did stand    5
Upon the furthest earth remov’d from thee;  
For nimble thought can jump both sea and land,  
As soon as think the place where he would be.  
But, ah! thought kills me that I am not thought,  
To leap large lengths of miles when thou art gone,   10
But that, so much of earth and water wrought,  
I must attend time’s leisure with my moan;  
  Receiving nought by elements so slow  
  But heavy tears, badges of either’s woe.