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Bob Bain

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[Oct. 22nd, 2003|09:37 pm]
Bob Bain
[Current Mood |exhaustedexhausted]

This isn't the erotic verse mentioned in a reply about rainbow erotic verse posted by elsibeth. This verse is tame in comparison but from memory Shakespeare described his women in rather down to Earth words.

He is reputed to have been a customer of prostitutes. As I understand it the Globe theatre was in or near a "red light" district of London and is one of the reasons "the goode people of London" wished theatre banned.

Shakespeare Love Poem

My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun;
Coral is far more red than her lips' red;
If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;
If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.

[ she doesn't brush her hair very often ] :-)

I have seen roses damask'd, red and white,
But no such roses see I in her cheeks;
And in some perfumes is there more delight
than in the breath that from my mistress reeks.

[ she has bad breath ]

I love to hear her speak, yet well I know
That music hath a far more pleasing sound;

[ she grunts and groans a lot ]

I grant I never saw a goddess go;
My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground.
And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare
As any she belied with false compare.

[ but he LOVES her nonetheless !! ]

William Shakespeare 1564 - 1616
(notations by Bob Bain 1944 - unknown)

[User Picture]From: acelightning
2003-10-22 09:36 pm (UTC)
the usual explanation of this sonnet is that it's making fun of the overblown romantic poetry of the time. she is a mortal woman, not a gold-and-ivory statue perfumed with rose petals, not a radiant goddess with a voice like heavenly music. to compare her to these impossible fantasies is false flattery - praising her realistically is a better way to express his love.

(notes: in Shakespeare's time, "reek" meant any vapor or aroma, whether pleasant or unpleasant.)

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