Friday, 16 July 2010

Future Bard

I've been reading Shakespeare lately.  He's one of those authors that we're told are amazing, but few people I've met have actually decided to read his work for their own enjoyment instead of for schoolwork -I had to study Macbeth and Tweltfth Night- so I decided a while back that I'd try and read some more.  I went through Hamlet (not bad but some peculiar pacing), Othello (my favourite), King Lear (which I did not get at all), and a couple of others, and I've just finished The Sonnets and Narrative Poems, which I really loved.
Everyone knows the two most famous sonnets "Let me not..." and "Shall I compare thee", but having finished the book I don't thing these two made my top ten list.  All of them are good, some of them are truly excellent, and the later sonnets are very emotionally interesting, dealing with the troubles of loving someone cruel.

The best one for me is 14, which struck me as lovely:

Not from the stars do I my judgment pluck,
And yet methinks I have astronomy,
But not to tell of good or evil luck,
Of plagues, of dearths, or seasons' quality;
Nor can I fortune to brief minutes tell,
Pointing to each his thunder, rain and wind,
Or say with princes if it shall go well,
By oft predict that I in heaven find:
But from thine eyes my knowledge I derive,
And, constant stars, in them I read such art
As truth and beauty shall together thrive,
If from thyself to store thou wouldst convert;
Or else of thee this I prognosticate:
Thy end is truth's and beauty's doom and date.

Maybe I'm just a bit of a romantic, but if someone spoke to me like that I think I might melt.

No comments:

Post a Comment