Wednesday Poetry Café (July 28)

I love Shakespearean sonnets, and I have rarely gotten to have any dealings with them since they are seen in Senior level literature and I have only taught Sophomores & Juniors.  So I thought we might all need a little love today, so I have chosen “Sonnet 141” by the great William Shakespeare.  It is one of my favorites, actually.  I’m not sure if that is because it is simply great…or it could be the fact that the English teacher in 10 Things I Hate About You raps it in a scene.  By the way, that is a great movie based on The Taming of the Shrew, so if you get a chance, check it out.


Anyway, back to the sonnet.  

In faith I do not love thee with mine eyes,

For they in thee a thousand errors note;

But ’tis my heart that loves what they despise,

Who, in despite of view, is pleased to dote.

Nor are mine ears with thy tongue’s tune delighted;

Nor tender feeling, to base touches prone,

Nor taste, nor smell, desire to be invited

To any sensual feast with thee alone:

But my five wits nor my five senses can

Dissuade one foolish heart from serving thee,

Who leaves unsway’d the likeness of a man,

Thy proud heart’s slave and vassal wretch to be:


Only my plague thus far I count my gain,

That she that makes me sin awards me pain.




I just love this sonnet.  To me it says that you can love in so many different ways, and sometimes that love is fighting itself within you.  That’s just a short and sweet interpretation from me.  What do you think?

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