Oh Thou, My Lovely Boy.

O thou my lovely boy
Sonnet 126
William Shakespeare

O thou, my lovely boy, who in thy power
Dost hold Time’s fickle glass his fickle hour;
Who hast by waning grown, and therein show’st
Thy lovers withering, as thy sweet self grow’st.
If Nature, sovereign mistress over wrack,
As thou goest onwards, still will pluck thee back,
She keeps thee to this purpose, that her skill
May Time disgrace, and wretched minutes kill.
Yet fear her, O thou minion of her pleasure!
She may detain, but not still keep her treasure.
Her audit, though delayed, answered must be,
And her quietus is to render thee.

When we fall in love we experience it in a myriad ways. Some are smitten almost immediately. From the moment they first see the object of their desire they are in love. An instant spark which soon develops into a seething flame. But for others, the glowing embers are slower to catch fire. For them, it takes time to develop into the heat of love and passion.
Thoughts of the object of our desire will be there of course, but for all sorts of reasons, we push the thoughts away, not wanting to acknowledge our awakening feelings of love and yes, lust.

Consider the two young men in my own WIP. The younger boy, Will is smitten by Edward from the moment he first sees him. His love for his friend is immediate and overpowering, and confusing for the then fifteen year old. He knows it is wrong but he can do nothing to stop his burgeoning feelings for Ned.
Edward’s feelings however, are slower to develop into anything to reciprocate Will’s. He sees Will as more of a younger brother than a potential lover. But as the months pass Edward’s feelings towards his friend change. Subtly at first, but eventually he is forced to confront what he really feels for Will.

In this snippet from my WIP Edward has left the dining room after an acrimonious exchange with his wife and goes off in search of Will;

“On leaving the dining room, Edward had gone in search of Will and had eventually found him in the solar where he was sitting in the window seat reading.
Edward stood in the shadows for a moment and observed Will where he sat. He watched as he frowned with concentration, how his eyes moved slowly across the the page, how his facial expressions changed, mirroring his thoughts. Even nodding slightly as he read something of which he agreed. So engrossed in the book that he was unaware of Edward’s presence, and Edward was touched as he remembered how he had encouraged Will to read and how, eager to please him Will had done so.

Still hidden in the shadows, and not wishing to disturb him yet, he watched for a few moments longer, thinking as he did how natural and unfeigned the boy in the window seat appeared as he remained unaware of Edward’s scrutiny. He noticed how the light from the window was reflected off the page, lending an almost luminous quality to his fair skin, and how the sun lit strands of corn coloured hair shimmered as he moved his head slightly.
And his face, that well loved face that was as familiar to him as his own, flushed pink with the heat of the late afternoon, the freckles scattered like gold dust across nose and cheekbones, his wide generous mouth, Oh God! a mouth made for giving and receiving kisses; kisses born of passion and of love
And with these thoughts, any illusions Edward had that his feelings towards Will were of a brotherly nature went straight out of the window by which Will sat. For now he knew beyond a shadow of a doubt, he was in love with the boy.

‘Edward’, Will looked up and smiled with pleasure and surprise as Edward left his place in the shadows and stepped fully into the chamber, ‘How long have you been standing there? I didn’t hear you come in’.

Sitting next to him Edward picked up the book Will had been reading, and seeing the cover he raised his eyebrows, ‘ Mort de Arthur, an excellent choice Will, and my favourite also’ He handed the book back to Will. ‘I’m in need of a breath of air’, he indicated the window, ‘and the rain has stopped for now. Come with me Will, and you can give me your thoughts on Malory as we walk’ ”


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