Hamlet and Juliet in A Midsummer Twelfth Night’s Sonnet on Shakespeare’s Birthday
(with apologies to Will)
In my salad days, when I was green in judgment,
not stepping o’er the bounds of modesty,
I was a dish fit for the gods.
Now I’m in my prime, set up with a posh little Upper East Side co-op and a hefty trust fund from Daddy… plus a live-in honey who’s fast losing his sweetness. Nothing in his life becomes him, and nothing will come of nothing.
He awoke, rounded with a little sleep. “Ay, me…”
“I have not slept one wink,” I bitched, rubbing my sore bottom. “What a piece of work is man! Do you think I am easier played on than a pipe?”
He leapt from the bed. “That is should come to this! Why, only last night you cried, A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!”
“True it is,” I countered, “that we have seen better days. Yet brevity is the soul of conscience, and the” (wince) “parting was such sweet sorrow.”
He was pi-i-i-issed. “Tempt not a desperate man, for delays make dangerous ends.”
(Now I’m thinking, “MY end got all the ‘danger’ last night… He hath eaten me out of house and home, and he thinks too much, with a lean and hungry look. There’s daggers in men’s smiles, and… is this a dagger I see before me?”)
I pointed to the door. “Out, damned Snot! Out, I say! Men of few words are the best men, and your tale is told by an idiot.”
“The course of love never did run smooth,” he stammered. “Shall we meet again?”
(Trying to live down the riddle… Q: ‘What do you call a bass player without a girlfriend?’ A: ‘Homeless.’)
He continued, “Don’t forget, dearest, we have a palimony agreement. You’ll pay a great deal too dear,” he grinned, “for what’s been given freely.”
“The game is up.” I stamped my little bare foot and caught a splinter. “This is the worst!”
He tried to rustle up tears as he packed. “There words are razors to my wounded heart. I will wear my heart upon my sleeve for Daws to pick at.”
(I knew that has-been “Mork and Mindy” chick Pamela Daws was after him, ever since the gig at the China Club.)
“In my mind’s eye,” I said, thinking of the money I’d have to pay this jerk, “shall I compare thee to the dogs of war? A borrower with a dull edge? The world is grown so bad, the fool doth think he is wise.”
I escorted him to the door. He shambled out, his bass hanging on his back like a monkey. Then, turning back to me, he whimpered, “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s-” SLAM!
Peace at last. “I like this place, and willingly would waste my time in it.” Then, cutting the first of many checks I’d have to pay my new ex, I grumbled, “But first… let’s kill all the lawyers.”
© 2013 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
It’s the Bard’s birthday! He’d be three days older than water today. This is also (and this is so tragically Shakespearean) the anniversary of his death, so he deserves something special. Imaginary Garden With Real Toads asked us to have our way with him (well, with his writing, anyway), but I gathered so many snippets from so many plays and sonnets, if I tried to do citations, they would run longer than the piece itself. I leave it to you, my oh-so-savvy readers, to separate the Will from the chaff. This will also be posted to dverse Open Mic Night.
NaPoWriMo #23 and still ticking! This form, which employs lines from other writer(s) re-ordered to create a new poem, is called something or other, but dang, I can’t remember. Paging Viv!! Peace, Amy