Sonnet 54

O, how much more doth beauty beauteous seemBy that sweet ornament which truth doth give!The rose looks fair, but fairer we it deemFor that sweet odour which doth in it live.The canker-blooms have full as deep a dyeAs the perfumed tincture of the roses,Hang on such thorns and play as wantonlyWhen summer's breath their masked buds discloses:But, for their virtue only is their show,They live unwoo'd and unrespected fade,Die to themselves. Sweet roses do not so;Of their sweet deaths are sweetest odours made: And so of you, beauteous and lovely youth, When that shall fade, my verse distills your truth.
Preserving love's beauty and mightmeans capturing more than the sightof a rose that looks rosy,for everyone knows weneed substance for truest delight.