Below are some notes towards an analysis of Sonnet 24 in terms of its meaning. Now see what good turns eyes for eyes have done: Mine eyes have drawn thy shape, and thine for me Are windows to my breast, where-through the sun Delights to peep, to gaze therein on thee; Yet eyes this cunning want to grace their art, They draw but what they see, know not the heart. What should we make of Sonnet 24, especially that curiously worded fourth line? This fourth line is a nightmare for editors seeking to gloss the Sonnets!
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William Shakespeare | Poetry Foundation
When I do count the clock that tells the time,? And see the brave day sunk in hideous night;? When I behold the violet past prime,? When lofty trees I see barren of leaves? Which erst from heat did canopy the herd,? Borne on the bier with white and bristly beard,?
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When the poet writes in Sonnet 24 of finding "where your true image pictured lies," he focuses on a meaning of "true" in the sense of genuine as opposed to counterfeit. The young man's beauty is often cast as a shape or appearance. Paintings, pictures, visual images, forms, shadows, reflected shapes, and perspective — all of these allude to the impression that the youth's true image is, in fact, a mirage. Note that the poet's elaborately stylized writing in this sonnet — the first eight lines are an extended metaphor of the poet as a painting onto which the youth's image is painted — is the very kind of writing the poet criticizes elsewhere. But the poet is defining what he sees as he discovers its power over him, almost as if love itself is the creation of a need in oneself where none previously existed.
Another character is woman who is a mistress. Now the question arises that whether his love towards the young man differ from his love for the dark lady or not. The first sonnet is about the handsome young man, where William Shakespeare elucidated about his boundless love for him and that is sonnet