Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
This will ever be my favourite sonnet. I still recall the first time I heard it. Mrs Hessel my English teacher in fourth form. We were studying the history of English literature, which was by far my favourite subject that year. We were slowly moving through time and had come to Shakespeare and she read this sonnet. I fell in love, the way the words flowed together, the imagery created. I was always in love with love, understanding it, knowing it, not just romantic love but all aspects of love, the kinds of love that bound souls together across lands and lives, across time and eternity. That hasn’t changed, my stories would be nothing without the love that binds the characters as friends, family and lovers. And this sonnet is still as powerful to me as it was when I was fourteen years old and still discovering what it was to love and be loved.