Happy Birthday, Will!

Today is the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, and  also the day that we seem to have settled on  as his birthday, although  that’s mostly because  it makes a nice story.  He wasn’t famous at the time of his birth, and  they weren’t as thorough at keeping records then as now, so we realy don’t know.



Anyway, his birthday provides an excuse for me to plug one of my own books: 155 Sonnets. Of course, I’ve never written any plays, so this is the one area where  I’ve exceeded him, and only in raw numbers, although I do feel that my sonnets are pretty good.  At any rate, they are all genuine sonnets, which use  iambic pentameter, have the right number and distribution of lines, one of the three acceptable rhyme schemes, and a clear point at the end.

It’s available on Amazon, or on Kindle, but for every real, paper copy sold through  Amazon I will donate $2 to Bernie Sanders’ campaign.  It’s a win-win-win.  You get a great book, 155 gems of poetic wisdom, some money will go to a good cause, and I’ll get some sales.

Let me include here the  first sonnet in  the book, which was also one  of the first  written, I think about 1992.  Apparently, at that  time, we were  using the date of April 14th as his birthday, because that  is the  title of the poem.  There’s one other  way in which the world has changed greatly since then.  You’ll see it in the poem:

April 14th

The modern world calls out for modern words

and modern words fall into modern rhymes

the message from the medium is inferred

the words we choose speak plainly of our times


While singing songs of post-industrial gloss

Our Rock and Rappin’ rhythms seem to fit

Yet truth is truth the universe across

and love and beauty haven’t changed a bit


Five billion people people  now the Earth

live lives of  jubilation and despair

Four more than at the time of  Shakespeare’s birth

Yet, I can’t think of one I would compare


For language, so expressive and sublime

He speaks to us across the space of time





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