Absence, hear thou my protestation
Against thy strength,
Distance and length:
Do what thou canst for alteration;
For hearts of truest mettle
Absence doth join, and time doth settle.
Who loves a mistress of such quality,
He soon hath found
Beyond time, place, and all mortality.
To hearts that cannot vary
Absence is present, time doth tarry.
My senses want their outward motions,
Which now within
Reason doth win
Redoubl’d in her secret notions;
Like rich men that take pleasure
In hiding, more than handling, treasure.
By absence this good means I gain,
That I can catch her
Where none can watch her,
In some close corner of my brain.
There I embrace and kiss her,
And so I both enjoy and miss her.