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Barahona 1 Diana Barahona ENG 102 B09 Cortese 18 April 2012 Essay 3 So Long as This Essay Lives William

Shakespeares Shall I compare thee to a summers day? is one of Shakespeares most beloved sonnets. Shakespeares usage of poetic devices creates a sense of strong devotion to his loved one also giving the sonnet much depth. He compares his loved one to a summers day, and uses rhyme, rhythm, metaphors, and symbolism to create an image of beauty for the readers imagination. The poem is a sonnet, which consists of 14 lines and a ABABCDCD rhyme scheme. This helps the poem give purpose to the theme and the concept behind it. Sonnets are usually meant to give comparisons and clarify a statement within a few lines. Shakespeare does a great job quickly showing the reader that there is great difference between his loved one and a summers day and tells the reader more through poetic devices. Shakespeare opens the poems with the thought of a comparison that elucidates the entire poem for the reader, Shall I compare thee to a summers day? (1). Shakespeare tries to compare the season of summer with the beauty of his loved one, but alas he cannot compare them to each other because his love is far beyond more beautiful and everlasting than summer, which soon has to come to an end. Every line after the first is Shakespeare justifying that they are different and begins to show the differences between them. Although Shakespeare cannot make a comparison between summer and his love, he still uses metaphors to explain why. The main symbol in the poem is the season of summer itself and that while summer is a beautiful

Barahona 2 time it only lasts for a season, and his love is eternal. Shakespeare explains the summer to reflect the love that he has for his loved one. He talks about the magnitude of the sun Sometimes too hot the eye of heaven shines (5), another example he compares to the affection towards his loved one. Shakespeare explains that every summer must come to an end, Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,- And summers lease hath all too short a date (3-4). Shakespeare is saying that the summer has an end, along with the beauty involved with the season. The beauty of summer is that of physical beauty, it soon changes into the next season or phase in life and the beauty that summer holds comes to an end some day as well. In lines 6 onto 8 Shakespeare says, And often is his gold complexion dimmed; And every fair from fair sometimes declines, By chance, or natures changing course, untrimmed. But thy eternal summer shall not fade, (6-9) Shakespeare explains that summer is too hot and uncomfortable and can get covered sometimes by clouds and get a duller but her beauty stays consistent and pure. Shakespeare ends the poem with these lines to show an everlasting love and view of beauty towards his loved one. The beauty displayed in the poem shall live for eternity because as long as the poem exists, so will his love for her. The whole symbolism behind the summers day is his undying love for the love of his life. Shakespeare says, But they eternal summer shall not fade, (9) so even if the summer comes to an end, his love for her will not. He then goes on proving this by saying, Nor lose possession of that fair thou owst,- Nor shall death brag thou wandrest in his shade, -When in eternal lines to time thou growst (10-11). He mocks death and says that death can never brag about having possession of such a wonderful and beautiful person

Barahona 3 and ends the poem saying that his love will never die and neither will her beauty. As the days grow old, so does the beauty summer holds, however, Shakespeare than twists the poem by saying, So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,- So long lives this, and this gives life to thee (13-14). The rhyme scheme that Shakespeare uses in this poem is ABABCDCDEFEFGG. Shakespeare uses this rhyme scheme to show a type of flowing beauty that his loved one has and also exemplifies the ongoing flow of his love toward her. Shall I compare thee to a summers day is a sonnet, which usually allows the poet to contrast ideas, and is shown in this poem with Shakespeare contrasting his love to a summers day. This rhyme scheme is a must with sonnets and helps the poem have a smooth transition between lines and gives an ongoing rhythm with the poem. The only change happens at the last two lines of the poem when Shakespeare ends it with the last two lines rhyming with each other. Shakespeare uses rhyme and rhythm, similes and metaphors, and symbolism to visualize the beauty of his loved one into the readers mind. Shakespeare decision not to compare summer to the love of his life because summer cannot surpass his love shows how much feeling and sentiment he had toward his love. Shall I compare thee to a summers day is one of Shakespeares most beloved sonnets for a reason, his use of poetic devices to show his compassion and love toward his loved one.

Barahona 4 Works Cited Shakespeare, William. Shall I compare thee to a summers day?: Reading, Reacting, Writing. Ed. Laurie, G. Kirszner and Stephen R. Mandell. 7th ed. Boston: Wadsworth, 20120. 923. Print.