A Midsummer Night's Dream

Few things are as unrestrainedly beautiful and joyful as William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. To properly understand the play, I suppose it would help if you've ever been in love. That's not to say it can't be read by people who haven't experienced love and loss, I first read A Midsummer Night's Dream in elementary school, and enjoyed it thoroughly (but I now see many more subtle complexities that I had before missed).

Some people claim Shakespeare had sinister intentions in writing this play, relying on magic, incantations and fantasy creatures... I am not one of that group, I adore Shakespeare's literary genius, truly at its height when he penned the ephemeral love story. Not to say that the brilliance of this story is short lived, rather, though it's brief in its entirety, it's truly a love story for the ages. He covered all aspects of love between men and women, from the turbulence of passion between Oberon and Titania to Helena's steadfast obsession with Demetrius, love is celebrated. As a side note, Shakespeare makes use of one of my favorite of his devices, the play within the play (Pyramus and Thisbe, put on by Nick Bottom and his comrades).

It's short, it's splendid, read it and give William Shakespeare another try.

"Ay me! for aught that I could ever read,
Could ever hear by tale or history,
The course of true love never did run smooth;
But either it was different in blood—"
-Lysander Act I Scene I

For an interesting take on A Midsummer Night's Dream, check out the 1999 version starring Kevin Kline, Michelle Pfeiffer and the gorgeous, sparkly Rupert Everett.

No comments:

Post a Comment