Sonnet XII: Patronage

Hast thou the heart to touch, or even look
Upon such art as this and give its due
An thou profess as fanciful, outgrew,
Though for this canvas rapture overtook;

But are such things professed forever true:
That hath these sculpted works thy nature shook;
And shall thy past refinement be forsook,
Though long thou from thine innocence withdrew?

Rare, priceless, as may not be seen again,
Wilt claim thou of thy prime: the best doth wane;
And of this art, so fast a friend may come,
Though whether ancient made or new, as fast.
Shalt thou most proper frame such art at last,
Or once more to thy patronage succumb?

This sonnet is part of a short sequence; click here to read it all:

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