Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18: An Expression of Grief

Today was hard. It is the anniversary of both Helen’s passing and of Dad’s funeral. I still love them and miss them both enormously. They are both still part of me, and always will be.

Photo by Joanne Van Leerdam: A rose from Helen’s funeral.

I tried to stay busy and keep my mind on other things. That only works to an extent: the knowledge and the memories are always right there, whispering into every moment and activity.

Poems like this help me to remember and they help me to heal and keep going. I love the beauty of the language and the power of the ideas and message.

I hope you enjoy it, too.

Shakespeare Nerd

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 adate;
Sometimetoo hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm’d,
And everyfairfrom fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature’s changing courseuntrimm’d:
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thouow’st,
Nor shall Death brag thou wand’rest 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.

William Shakespeare, Sonnet 18

This sonnet is popularly believed to be a poem of love and admiration. That may be a fair interpretation of the first two lines, and I suppose that might be as far as some people read.

However, when…

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