Sonnet 137 Love Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
If eyes, corrupt by over-partial looks,
Be anchored in the bay where all men ride,
Why of eyes' falsehood hast thou forgèd hooks,
Whereto the judgment of my heart is tied? (5-8)
Ah, now we get it. The problem is that Love has made the speaker unable to take his eyes off a woman who cheats on him with "all men" in the world. Yikes. That doesn’t sound so good. But wait—it actually gets worse. It turns out that Love wasn’t satisfied just with making the speaker hooked on the appearance of this woman. Instead, he has used the speaker’s eyes as a way of getting at his heart. Now that his heart is attached, all bets are off.
Why should my heart think that a several plot,
Which my heart knows the wide world’s common place? (9-10)
Now we see the effects of that whole heart-being-attached problem. Even though the speaker knows, deep down in his heart, that his lady-friend is everybody else’s lady-friend too, it keeps telling him that she has reserved herself for him. Notice that, in these lines, the speaker has stopped explicitly blaming Love for his problems. In fact, from line 7 until the end of the poem, there will be no more mention of Love. Even in line 7, he is referred to only in a fairly indirect way, as "thou," which forces us to think all the way back to the beginning of the poem to remember who the speaker is talking to. Has the speaker changed his mind and decided that the god of Love isn’t really to blame, but rather his own heart and eyes? Who would you blame for this relationship hitting the rocks?
In things right true my heart and eyes have erred,
And to this false plague are they now transferred. (13-14)
Even though the poet has stopped speaking explicitly about Love, he seems to end the poem more in the grips of Love than ever. Even after everything he’s been through, he still feels that not only his "eyes," but also his "heart" have been "transferred" to his nasty lady. Yikes. Love is dangerous stuff. Like, they should put a warning label on it, or something.