Shakespeare Sonnet 129

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Sonnet 129 is an interesting poem in Shakespeare’s set of sonnets, supposedly, addressed to his dark mistress. This sonnet is full figurative language and other poetic devices that let the reader know exactly how the poet feels about the emotions and dangers associated with lust. He also uses interesting punctuation choices that create the flow and tone of the poem. As the readers, we do not know who this poem is addressed to due to the lack of thou, he, or she in the poem. It does seem to be describing a personal experience, but we do not know for sure whom our poetic persona interacted with to cause these emotions. The poetic persona starts by describing just how cynical lust is before acted upon and describes how crazy the urge to satisfy this intense craving becomes. In the end, he shows us it is all a meaningless waste of energy, leaving the predator in regret and caught in a vicious cycle of striving to experience that heavenly memory of satisfaction. The problem is, why do we repeatedly chase and satisfy this urge if we know it will confine us to the cage of “hell?” The first two lines of the poem tell us that lust in action, or sex, is the cost of “spirit in a waste of shame.” Shame is a painful emotion of humiliation experienced when a person consciously commits a wrongdoing of his own moral standards. This person is wasting their time and energy doing something they know they should not be doing. When one continuously falls into traps, they know they should not, it slowly lowers moral and takes their sense of pride right from under their feet, however, our poetic persona is willing to give his spirit, what he represents as a person, to satisfy his uncontrollable desires. Until lust is acted upon, the poetic persona personifies lust as this uncontrollable “extreme”, “cruel”, even “murderous” beast that instantly changes people into untrustworthy, deceitful, soulless beings, often the opposite of what they are without lust. These nine adjectives...
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