William Shakespeare. 1564–1616

Sonnet CXLIII.

“Lo, as a careful housewife runs to catch”

LO, as a careful housewife runs to catch  
One of her feather’d creatures broke away,  
Sets down her babe, and makes all quick dispatch  
In pursuit of the thing she would have stay;  
Whilst her neglected child holds her in chase,    5
Cries to catch her whose busy care is bent  
To follow that which flies before her face,  
Not prizing her poor infant’s discontent:  
So runn’st thou after that which flies from thee,  
Whilst I thy babe chase thee afar behind;   10
But if thou catch thy hope, turn back to me,  
And play the mother’s part, kiss me, be kind;  
  So will I pray that thou mayst have thy Will,  
  If thou turn back and my loud crying still.