Sir William —
Though ‘t be but pitiful mockery, I do
In semblance of thy tongue address thee:
Thou surely knowst my love for thee;
All curses upon thy name uttered of late
In heart of imprudence.
Yet, hark — for others inquire in earnest:
Sons and daughters of this, the Digital Age —
They hath no remembrance of thee; or else decry thy “relevance”
And hold as common relics thy work.
But peace! Thy canon is great, ’tis certainty.
Yet must I with pain admit: disquiet akin to this
Have I voiced in weakness, among trusted allies:
“Thousands of years of literature and he’s still the only guy
Whose course I’m required to take in college?”
Surely it be conceded: others just as great
Hath lived and much hath they writ
Would be held as high and yet of greater “relevance”
In our day — in this Digital Age.
What of Homer? what of Dickens? what of Chaucer?
Hemingway? Poe? Fitzgerald? — nay?
All talk of Romeo and Hamlet and Othello,
Yet wherefore no such holiness granted
Holmes and Baggins and Mr. Spock?
“How is that fair?” the louts sayeth —
For… as I proclaim: ’tis they who ask — not I.
Nay, certainly not I.
Thy faithful apprentice
…Huh? What? Oh, sorry about that. What was I saying? I may have dozed off there for a second. On an unrelated note, I think I’ve been cramming too long for this Shakespeare exam.