An enlightening and entertaining collection of the most esteemed love poems in the English canon, retold in contemporary language everyone can understand James Anthony has long enjoyed poetry with a strict adherence to beat, rhythm, and rhyming patterns, which he likens to the very best pop songs. This drew him to the rewarding 14-line structure of Shakespeare’s sonnets, yet he often found their abstract language frustratingly unintelligible. One day, out of curiosity, he rewrote Sonnet 18—Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day—line-by-line, in the strict five-beat iambic pentameter and rhyming patterns of the original, but in a contemporary language a modern reader could easily understand. The meaning and sentiment—difficult to spot, initially—came to life, revealing new intricacies in the workings of Shakespeare's heart. And so, James embarked on a full-time, year-long project to rewrite all 154 of the Bard's eternal verses creating SHAKESPEARE'S SONNETS, RETOLD. This collection of masterful reinterpretations brilliantly demystifies and breathes new life into Shakespeare's work, demonstrating the continued resonance of a playwright whose popularity remains over 400 years after his death. Now, the passion, heartbreak, deception, reconciliation, and mortality of Shakespeare’s originals can be understood by all, without the need to cross reference to an enjoyment-sapping study-guide. Coming with a foreword by Stephen Fry, this is a stunning collection of beautiful love poems made new.
Cassidy wrote this book because she wanted to help everyone understand Shakespeare. She started to get interested in Shakespeare's plays when she was seven. Although the language could be hard to understand in the beginning because of the time period the plays were written, the stories are timeless. Cassidy's goal of writing this book is to lay out the story line for people who are not familiar with Shakespeare's plays so when they go see the plays, they will understand everything that's happening in the play. She chose to retell Shakespeare's tragedies because she liked the complicated plots of these plays and the way Shakespeare kept her in suspense. She couldn't wait to find out who got into trouble this time. The five plays she retold are Macbeth, King Lear, Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet and Othello. She organized this book into three parts: the retelling of the five Shakespeare tragedies, the sonnets and poems, and the riddles. She hopes you'll enjoy this book and will start to enjoy Shakespeare's plays too!
The Drama in Shakespeare's Sonnets: "A Satire to Decay" is a work of detective scholarship. Unable to believe that England's great dramatist would publish a sequence of sonnets without a plot, Mark Jay Mirsky-novelist, playwright, and professor of English, proposes a solution to a riddle that has frustrated scholars and poets alike. Arguing that the Sonnets are not just a "higgledy piggledy" collection of poems but were put in order by Shakespeare himself, and drawing on the insights of several of the Sonnets' foremost contemporary scholars, Mirsky examines the Sonnets poem by poem to ask what is the story of the whole. Mirsky takes Shakespeare at his own word in Sonnet 100, where the poet, tongue in cheek, advises his lover to regard"time's spoils"-in this case, "any wrinkle graven" in his cheek-as but "a satire to decay." The comfort is obviously double-edged, but it can also be read as a mirror of Shakespeare's "satire" on himself, as if to praise his own wrinkles, and reflects thepoet's intention in assembling the Sonnets to satirize the playwright's own "decay" as a man and a lover. In a parody of sonnet sequences written by his fellow poets Spenser and Daniel, Shakespeare's mordant wit conceals a bitter laugh at his ownromantic life. The Drama in Shakespeare's Sonnets demonstrates the playwright's wish to capture the drama of the sexual betrayal as he experienced it in a triangle of friendship and eroticism with a man and a woman. It is a plot, however, that theplaywright does not want to advertise too widely and conceals in the 1609 Quarto from all but a very few. Despite Shakespeare's moments of despair at his male friend's betrayal and the poet's cursing at the sexual promiscuity of the so-called Dark Lady, The Drama in Shakespeare's Sonnets sees the whole as a "satire" by Shakespeare and, particularly when read with the poem that accompanied it in the 1609 printing, "A Lover's Complaint," as a laughing meditation on the irrepressible joy of sexual life.
Alongside Spenser, Sidney and the early Donne, Shakespeare is the major poet of the 16th century, largely because of the status of his remarkable sequence of sonnets. Professor Cousins' new book is the first comprehensive study of the Sonnets and narrative poems for over a decade. He focuses in particular on their exploration of self-knowledge, sexuality, and death, as well as on their ambiguous figuring of gender. Throughout he provides a comparative context, looking at the work of Shakespeare's contemporaries. The relation between Shakespeare's non-dramatic verse and his plays is also explored.
Helen Vendler, widely regarded as our most accomplished interpreter of poetry, here serves as an incomparable guide to some of the best-loved poems in the English language. In detailed commentaries on Shakespeare's 154 sonnets, Vendler reveals previously unperceived imaginative and stylistic features of the poems, pointing out not only new levels of import in particular lines, but also the ways in which the four parts of each sonnet work together to enact emotion and create dynamic effect.
"Of Shakespeare's sonnets we know many details but little of their subjects and motives. This book delineates the customs and beliefs that shaped the sonnets, Shakespeare's life and world, and considers them in that context. This book argues for understan
The Text of the Sonnets, with Interpretive Essays by Edward Hubler, Northrop Frye, Leslie A. Fiedler, Stephen Spender, and R. P. Blackmur, and Including the Full Text of Oscar Wilde's The Portrait of Mr W. H.
First published in 1977. This book ascertains what sources Shakespeare used for the plots of his plays and discusses the use he made of them; and secondly illustrates how his general reading is woven into the texture of his work. Few Elizabethan dramatists took such pains as Shakespeare in the collection of source-material. Frequently the sources were apparently incompatible, but Shakespeare's ability to combine a chronicle play, one or two prose chronicles, two poems and a pastoral romance without any sense of incongruity, was masterly. The plays are examined in approximately chronological order and Shakespeare's developing skill becomes evident.