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.
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.
I love to hear her speak, yet well I know
That music hath a far more pleasing sound;
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.
I read so much Shakespeare when I was in high school, I was definitely in love with the idea of love, and his heroic love stories fed my fascinations. Romeo and Juliet was a tragic love story sure, but it was all about the most fantastic form of never-ending love right?
I have loved this particular sonnet since the first time I read it, saving it to memory with a fondness that rivals with few other things I have managed to remember over the years. It’s an intoxicating thought, for someone to be so deeply in love with someone who is far from beautiful, and yet the speaker is still enamored by everything about the person. A Few nights ago I was re-reading this and I realized I had Shakespeare wrong all along. He wrote not of beautiful love, or fantastical tragedy’s, but of the love that could never be. It’s commonly known that he is gay, so this only makes too much sense for him to have been so passionate about a subject few have managed to master since him. We don’t choose who we fall in love with, and unfortunately heartbreak is still a subject that we can understand after all this time. It’s a concept that transcends the generations and speaks to the soul, something I would be give anything to be able to do in my writing.