William Shakespeare. 1564–1616

Sonnet CXIX.

“What potions have I drunk of Siren tears”

WHAT potions have I drunk of Siren tears  
Distill’d from limbecks foul as hell within,  
Applying fears to hopes, and hopes to fears,  
Still losing when I saw myself to win!  
What wretched errors hath my heart committed,    5
Whilst it hath thought itself so blessed never!  
How have mine eyes out of their spheres been fitted,  
In the distraction of this madding fever!  
O benefit of ill! now I find true  
That better is by evil still made better;   10
And ruin’d love, when it is built anew,  
Grows fairer than at first, more strong, far greater.  
  So I return rebuk’d to my content,  
  And gain by ill thrice more than I have spent.