Poetry I Avoid

There are people out there who will think I am an idiot for this, but I don’t like Shakespeare.  I just don’t.  We read a lot of his work in High School, and again in college and grad school.  I know that there are theorists who think that all literature after Shakesy was derived from his work.  I know that there are people that find perfection in his iambs.

It’s not that I find his work difficult.  I have no problem with the language.  I just get frustrated with his followers.  They try and pound his work into our heads without questioning why.  Why do they care?  Why should we? 

Shakespeare was really good at taking European folklore and turning it into nice plays.  However, I refuse to believe it is the basis for all literature that followed.  We all take from folklore, we all look to life.  His plays are quite good, but I don’t really like plays anyway.  His poetry is love poetry, and he was good with a sonnet.  So were a lot of his contemporaries.  And they often took on a larger range of topics.  It’s not hard to write the perfect love sonnet when that’s all you really write.As for his poetry, I don’t think it is anywhere near as good as his plays.  I think that it mostly gets attention because he wrote it.  Personally, I’d take “there is a certain slant of light” over any of his sonnets any day.  They all tend to have a self-important voice. I hate that. I actually think that Blake and Donne are much better examples of British Literature in both theme and voice.

I’ve had quite a few teachers and friends try and talk a little Shakespeare down my throat, and perhaps that is also why I am so resistant.  I wonder if anyone else is saying this, too…

7 Comments

Filed under Frustrations and Rants, literature, Musings, poetry, poetry thursday, Uncategorized

7 responses to “Poetry I Avoid

  1. I agree ( he says while stepping on stage next to slynne and fully expecting gunfire ).

  2. I happen to love Shakespeare’s plays, the sonnets, not so much, but then again I don’t really care enough to have any reaction to someone who does not agree. So there ya go.

  3. I like Shakespeare’s plays, but if “derivitive” is something negative, as it is always used against writers, well, no one wrote more derivitive works than Shakespeare!

    His sonnets? They don’t thrill me either. Except the one that makes fun of sonnets. 130
    http://www.albionmich.com/inspiration/mymistresseyes.html
    (Sorry, I’m new to hyperlinking- new to PT, too. . . )

  4. You post is bold and honest.

  5. Ann Spam

    I don’t think one has to like Shakespeare; it’s all very subjective and that’s one of the reasons why people like literature.

    But I’m not so lucky; Shakespeare in my school is a joke.

  6. Pingback: Edna St. Vincent Millay « So you think I can

  7. maggiedorine

    I have thought this for years. Lucky for me, I reached Will before my teachers were able to shove his work into me, and I still don’t like him. He’s horribly clever, I catch everything he says, and there’s even a perverted joke every once and a while (i.e., every page) but it’s a matter of personal preference.

    Do you want to know something even more interesting? I’m the center of the drama kid crowd at my school.

    I don’t blame you. Shakespeare and all plays are written to be seen live, not read.

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