Sonnet 18 – William Shakespeare: Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?

Shall I compare thee (Credit: Google images)


Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date:
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm’d;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature’s changing course untrimm’d;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade
Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest;
Nor shall Death brag thou wander’st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou growest:
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this and this gives life to thee.


For some, Sonnet 18 is the ultimate love poem. There are others who find this difficult to accept.

As for myself, I take neither position. For me, my wife Gaby is the ultimate love poem, personified. Who needs Shakespeare when I have Gaby?

But let me get to my point. I personally believe Shakespeare does himself and the Sonnet a disservice by allowing each and every reader to interpret the Sonnet.

It is obviously clear that everyone can’t be correct when you have opposing viewpoints that are so extreme.

For me, the implication is quite clear. As someone who from time to time writes a bit of poetry, I feel it a duty to leave a clear account of what the poem means, who or what it refers to, even if it robs you of your ability to analyse and interpret my meanings.

You will forgive me, I dare to hope, especially after I am long gone and there is no way I can clarify what I was saying in my poem.

Poem 1 – Let it Be, was written in this way, and so shall Poem 2 – follow in this way.

After I have collected 50 poems, I will let you, my friend and reader, choose the best 25 poems, the ones that speak to you, move you, touch you, inspire you, reach out to you, and then they shall be published – and offered to you – FREE.

The best things in life are Free – at least free of being bought and sold.

Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?

Best regards,

About profesorbaker

Thomas Baker is the Past-President of TESOL Chile (2010-2011). He enjoys writing about a wide variety of topics. The source and inspiration for his writing comes from his family.
This entry was posted in Education, EFL and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Sonnet 18 – William Shakespeare: Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?

  1. Tyrone says:

    here is a image of the sonnet
    sonnet 18 is my best loved poem


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