The playwright, actor and arguably the finest poet and author ever would have turns 454 today. I use present tense because he’s still here — his words influence our language everyday, Many of them, he conjured up on his own. Heck, they sounded right. Assassination, inaudible, manager, swagger. Today, his plays are popular and perpetually studied and reinterpreted in performances of all sorts— from Leo and Claire in Romeo and Juliet on the big screen, to off-Broadway productions of President Donald Trump as mad King Lear. Shakespeare’s characters and plots present flawed, real and, well, a spectrum of human beings in a wide range of emotions and conflicts that transcend time and place, resonating centuries later. We even often find The Bard’s words trickling down our own tongue, into the atmosphere, a wit beyond our own, an argument from seventh- grade English. and not even recall wherefrom we heard such language. See: some examples of how Will might respond to a few 21st century situations.
Goes out for a “happy hour” beer with friends, has a few too many (wait, what? Shots? I shall not, but, hell), agrees to visit PT’s Gold Club, faces his lovely wife, who crinkles her nose showing displeasure at the intermingling aromas of Rumple Mintze, cut-rate perfume and chagrin, as the sun rises.
There is nothing neither good or bad, but thinking makes it so. (He says, lacking strong conviction.)
While learning about Black Lives Matter and the related struggles of all involved, he accidentally happens upon a YouTube video featuring Tomi Lahren, because it pops up on the right, and she is she is so shiny he cannot resist.
#SMH All that glitters is not gold.#TomiLahren
A woman he’s been dating awhile asks the poet to be her plus-one at a “couples baby shower”; accepts the invite.
Hell is empty and all the devils are here.
Neighbor corners him while he’s trimming his hedges and proceeds to share her views, or well-rehearsed talking points on politics and religion, even bringing up Will’s good buddy George Mason, indicating disapproval.
Give thy thoughts no tongue. [drops hedge clippers and slowly backs away].
Arrives home early from rock climbing with his buds — bad ankle — and wife is rummaging through his desk, his pockets…it’s an official Snoop.
Suspicion always haunts the guilty mind. [Follows with dramatic turn and march to the bathroom].
He a strong candidate for FML post of the day: Rejection letters, lowball offers on side-gig, soul crushing copywriting and corporate writing jobs (thus financial woes) loses his keys, computer crashes (“is it backed up” is all anyone can seem to say), crashes car, rides DART, where kindly elderly woman falls asleep on his shoulder—wait, no, she is dead—evil witch casts a spell on him via the comments section. To name a few.
Time and the hour run through the roughest day.
OK, William decides to marry a farmer’s daughter, a pregnant woman of 18, despite his buddies and loved ones insisting it’s a bad move (this one’s real).
I hold the world … a stage where every man must play a part.
Mother in law, priest, sister plead with William to attend church services.
And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in everything.
“Tradition has it that William Shakespeare died on his 52nd birthday, April 23, 1616 (though many scholars believe this a myth). Church records show he was interred at Trinity Church on April 25, 1616,” notes Biography.com.
Shakespeare is immortal in many ways — his wise, witty wonderful words will never wilt. I like to think he was reincarnated into Dave Chappell, but I really have nothing to go on at this point.
Anyway, Dallas celebrates Shakespeare in many ways, throughout the year (think Shakespeare in the park).