Shakespeare…highly regarded in his own day and even now as one of the most prolific writers of poetry, plays, fiction and non-fiction. He was considered the Steven Spielberg of his day. You can’t argue that Shakespeare’s writing has left a lasting impression on literature in terms of plots, characterisation, language and genre.
Romance and tragedy for example wouldn’t be addressed in the same play until Romeo and Juliet. In an experimental time for theatre, he used soliloquies to explore the minds of the characters rather than just convey information about settings, situations and status.
Language as an entity wasn’t standardise in the 1500 and 1600’s, to which Shakespeare helped formalise by sticking to a few simple rules. The idea of a beginning, middle and an end came out of the proverbial soup that was Shakespeare’s brain.
Moving on to his sonnets and poems which are suspected to have been written throughout his lifetime until his death in 1616; they are said to be an insight not into his mind, but into something more meaningful to humanity…the heart. I suppose this is how poetry can differ from prose. Instead of telling a narrative, you can write or read something from a real human experience. Shakespeare influenced poets such as Thomas Hardy, William Blake and even Charles Dickens during times when they were paid by the inch of writing they produce. Thomas Hardy having influenced Denny Bradbury’s poems Heatherland and Thoughts of Love which can both be found in a collection of her works Denagerie of Poems. Like Thomas Hardy and therefore its safe to say that like Shakespeare himself, the inspiration for Denagerie of Poems is gathered from a collection of observations. The poems were written over the last few years and are offered to the reader for reflection on the world and state of mind in the 21st Century.
Denagerie of Poems gives a category of topics to look upon, Idle Thoughts Whilst Procrastinating for example looks at the idea of entertaining guests and the feelings you get before they arrive, this is personified in the obvious phrase “There is so much to entertaining, be suave or ‘act the fool?’” But with a slight humorous narrative, which gives the question what would happen if you were to accidentally burn the house down before everyone arrives.
Shakespeare, the master of irony has left his mark on the English by breathing life into words to which ironically go full circle and become sweets to the sweet and a door to the eye of the mind…(how many phrases did you spot there?).