Essay on Sonnet: Poetry and Sonnet

Submitted By ammcgil2
Words: 932
Pages: 4

The Sonnet Lady
Shakespeare was a loving and knowledgeable man. I made this observation after reading all one hundred and fifty four of his sonnets. They are all fourteen lines long and some of those are written in iambic pentameter. Sonnet 130, The Lady Sonnet, fascinated me the most. Shakespeare is saying that he knows women are not always good looking as they are described to be and that we should love them anyway. In this sonnet, the tone is unconditional love. Shakespeare talks about his life involving his mistress faults and his feelings about her. In line seven and eight he says “And in some perfumes is there more delight than in the breath that from my mistress reeks”, he is basically saying that her breath stinks. In this sonnet, I believe the turning point is found in the last two lines where Shakespeare switches his approach completely. He has been criticizing his mistress, and then all of a sudden he starts telling us how much he loves her. The stress and unstressed exercise practiced in class gave me a better understanding of the many sound patterns in this sonnet. “My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun” is a great example of assonance. The words my, eyes, are, like, sun are stressed, while the others are unstressed. Lines four and eleven are perfect patterns of alliterations. Line four states “If hair be wires, black wires grow on her head.” The same “h” consonant is revealed, as well as in lines eleven, the hard “g” in the words grant, goddess, and go. Overall I fell that Shakespeare might have used these sounds patterns in his sonnet to give readers an enhanced image of what his disgusted mistress looks like.
There were a few words in this sonnet that I didn’t understand such as “reeks.” According to the dictionary, a reek is defined as an unpleasant smell while Shakespeare defines it as emanates. However, wires happen to be another key word that I did understand but had a different meaning than what I expected. When I read line four, I pictured “wires” as being a metal thin, flexible, black wire. In the book, “wires” is described as the comparison of golden hair to gold wire; dated back to the thirteenth century, meaning hers were black not golden. Rom that line I can tell that Shakespeare is attracted to blonde headed woman, and definitely been with one in the past. There were a couple of lines in this sonnet that had strange word order such as “if snow be white “which is a proverbial meaning the same as the simile “as white as snow.” After breaking words down, and defining words I didn’t know, this sonnet became very clear to my understanding.
There are many themes in this sonnet, and love seems to be the more appealing because it is mostly about finding love in spite of the physical flaws. He keeps his motives for loving this woman to himself. Appearance is another major theme in sonnet 130 and also a blazon because the author is over exaggerating descriptions of each part of the woman’s body. He expresses how coral is far redder than her lips, all the way down to how she walks. Shakespeare spends a lot of the poem talking about what's wrong with his mistress's looks. The appearance gives our author a chance to make fun at our fascination with looks and to show how silly it is to ask any person to live up to some model of perfect…