Adam Shefsky ENG 4UZ Ms. Eldridge Thursday, March 11, 2010 Sonnet 18 by William Shakespeare Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate: Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer’s lease hath all too short a date: Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, And often is his gold complexion dimmed; And every fair from fair sometime declines, By chance or nature’s changing course untrimmed; But thy eternal summer shall not fade, Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st; Nor shall death brag thou wander’st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow’st: So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see, So long lives this, and this gives life to thee. Adam Shefsky ENG 4UZ Ms. Eldridge Thursday, March 11, 2010 The Real Shakespeare Essay / Analysis…okay maybe not an essay… Poetry is a great way for a person to express what they are feeling, or what they feel about a certain subject through words. Following simple guidelines poets are able to create poetry that affects the way you may think about a certain topic or might have a strong emotional impact on you.
Although there are many poems that can be considered great, only one can be the best. And that poem was written by William Shakespeare. It is titled Sonnet 18 and is a poem that centers on the feelings of love and admiration for a woman, by comparing the woman to nature’s beauty. As well as being well written and meaningful, this poem also earns its position as the world’s best poem by being one of the most well-known poems by Shakespeare, being quoted by many men trying to impress the women they are with.
Sonnet 18 is also one of the rare poems that contain both sound devices and symbolism throughout each stanza. The use of both these poetic devices bring this poem together well, by having the rhythmic movement throughout the poem as well as having the symbolisms giving it a more creative and unique style. The sound devices that are found and used throughout the poem range from rhyming, alliteration, and repetition. As well as sound devices, Shakespeare used many symbolisms throughout the poem; Shakespeare used different examples of similes and metaphors, alternating between using the two throughout the stanzas.
Not many poems contain both sound devices and symbolism, but when used together well you get a poem that is not only meaningful and interesting but also complex enough to keep the reader’s attention. A strong example of rhyming in this poem would be “So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see, So long lives this, and this gives life to thee. ” This couplet in Shakespeare’s poem differs from the rest as it differs from the rhyming meter that was used before it, which was an: a, b, a, b style pattern, and chooses to end the sonnet with a couplet.
By doing this Shakespeare brings attention to these last two lines as the reader notices a change in the rhyming pattern before, this is used effectively as Shakespeare allows the reader to notice that the last two lines are important and ends the poem. In the first line of this sonnet we can find an example of alliteration being used to emphasize what Shakespeare is trying to emphasize in this line. “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? ” in which the words shall and summer stand out more as Adam Shefsky ENG 4UZ Ms. Eldridge Thursday, March 11, 2010 hey share a common beginning. By doing this Shakespeare is making it so that the reader can almost subconsciously know that these words are important to the meaning of the line. When reading through the poem it can be seen that right from the beginning of the poem alliterations are being used effectively to help Shakespeare say what he wants and create a steady flow through the poem. Another device that can be seen is repetition, which allows Shakespeare to effectively emphasize what is important in the sonnet. Seen here “Thou art more lovely and more temperate. easily seen but effectively used to not only help the poem keep its rhythm but to show the importance of this line, by showing how he really feels about the subject. “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? ” opens the poem, letting the reader know that this poem has some emotional feeling as the simile to compare the subject of the poem to what Shakespeare believes represents something of perfection. The line “But thy eternal summer shall not fade” is Shakespeare using a metaphor to describe how the subject’s perfection and beauty will always be perfect.
The use of all these devices and symbolisms are what help make this poem the best in the world. By using each of the symbolisms and devices, Shakespeare creates a very well written and perfectly structured poem. The devices and symbolisms work together using each other to help keep the poem moving and stay interesting, and help get the point of the poem across more subtle. The fact that this poem contains a lot of creative uses of sound devices and symbolism as well as how popular this particular sonnet is so popular and well-known are what make this poem my choice as the best.
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