Summary and Analysis
Resignedly, the poet is prepared to accept whatever fate brings. Because his life depends on the youth's love, his life will not survive the loss of that love and support: "And life no longer than thy love will stay, / For it depends upon that love of thine." Because even a much smaller injury than total rejection would emotionally affect him, why, the poet asks, should the youth inflict a far greater calamity by ending the relationship altogether? He is angry at the prospect of a capricious and summary rejection and, with open contempt of the young man's inconstant mind, declares that he will either be happy in the continued friendship or he will die. Ironically, his decision to die should the young man reject him causes him to doubt the young man's sincerity both now and in the past. Only here at the end of the relationship, with their continuing friendship questionable at best, is the poet willing to concede of the youth, "Thou mayst be false, and yet I know it not."