An Analysis of Shakespeare's Sonnet

Topics: Iambic pentameter, Poetry, Poetic form Pages: 3 (1121 words) Published: October 8, 1999
William Shakespeare’s sonnet, That Time of Year Thou Mayst in Me Behold emphasizes that death is upon us stressing on the importance of love. By using metaphors he relates death to nature. Using symbolism of autumn leaves, twilight and glowing fire evolving to one conclusion awaiting death. By using Iambic meter he is showing a rising effect to get to the climax of the sonnet. Shakespeare shows how his character is weighed down by torment that his life is coming to an end. He is in search of sympathy saying if you see me like this you will love me even more. Therefore saying, love me now before I am gone or it may be too late. That time of year thou mayst in me behold When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang Upon those boughs which shake against the cold, Bare ruin’d choirs, where late the sweet birds sang. In quatrain one, Shakespeare has come to the understanding that death is upon him by describing the changes of autumn leaves, bordering on the aging process and his hair turning gray. The boughs which shake are the tremors his body is having reminding himself once more that he is not as young as he use to be and ageing has left him feeling like he has lost the power to write. By focusing on the fact that ageing is a slow and discouraging process he is building on the hopes that someone will feel sorry for him and acknowledge the fact that he may die soon. In me thou see’st the twilight of such day As after sunset fadeth in the west, Which by and by black night doth take away, Death’s second self, that seals up all in rest. The second quatrain is focusing on twilight and the metaphors adjoining death. This is the time between night and day symbolizing life and death, he is saying that I am close to death I don’t have much time. In the last two sentences of the quatrain, the end of the day resembles the end of life and showing how sleep and death are the same. He is coming to grips with accepting death but he...
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