A Sonnet For Shakespeare

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day

Or winter’s breath that doth freeze our souls in sleep?

Thou are more lovely and more strong than they,

Whose mellifluous works do play us diving deep

And show forth pearls beneath the glassy sea.

Sometime too hot the passions of our lives do glow,

And oft the sweetness of our tongues doth flee,

Yet hast thou seen it all, and judged us slow,

Measure by measure, shown us what we are,

Imagined what we can be still

And left us astonied over these centuries far

How thou thy solemn promise did fulfill

To hear, see, and speak, but not to tell

The dark secret on the shore by which we dwell.





2 thoughts on “A Sonnet For Shakespeare

  1. You liked it? You really liked it? It’s not perfect. I wanted it to be perfect, but I ran out of time. The aim was to do something interesting for his 400th anniversary, and at the last minute, I chose to do a sonnet. In Shakespeare’s day up through the nineteenth century, people used to toss off sonnets like nothing–in contests among themselves or to while away an evening, but I am woefully out of practice. The little voice inside my head kept saying, “Stick to prose. . . .” But the exercise seemed worthwhile. The poem certainly isn’t perfect in the sense of “regular,” but even the Shakespearean sonnet isn’t perfect in that way, either. The aim was to hint at the wonderful music of Shakespeare’s line, and the endless suggestiveness of his thought. (And to throw in a pun or two.)

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