Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Sonnet 116 by William Shakespeare

Sonnet 116

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
--William Shakespeare

I mostly associate this poem with Sense and Sensibility Though I can't find any mention of it in the book, so it must have been one of the things that earned Emma Thompson her Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar.

I'm not sure I entirely agree with the sentiment, though. Yes, true love should be unconditional, and should last through time and adversity...but at the same time, there are things that are too much to bear, and with enough time and distance, hearts can fall out of love, or heal from a hurt without having to be accused of never really loving in the first place.

Peter and I watched a bit of this movie the other day. We had just watched House, and Peter was looking him up on IMDb. We noticed that he had been in the Blackadder series with Rowan Atkinson, and had fun looking at goofy images of him from that time. Then Peter saw that he was Mr.Palmer in Sense and Sensibility. He asked me who that was, and I told him he's somebody's husband, who's always looking annoyed behind a newspaper. He wanted to hear him speaking with an English accent, so I fast forwarded to where they're all coming home from London, and Mrs. Palmer says "Just think, we can see his despicable house from the top of our hill. I shall have Gardener plant a tall hedge." and Mr. Palmer looks up from his newspaper and grumpily says, "You will do nothing of the sort!" Then, of course, we had to fast forward to the end, to see Edward return and explain himself -- Oh...It's just too romantic!


  1. We went to see that movie while we were dating. :) Good one!

  2. Hi Karen,

    I hadn't looked at your blog for awhile and I really enjoyed it today. The little diagram of how many days 'til baby is pretty amazing. It took me awhile to realize it was moving and changing. Pretty clever.

    So Hugh Laurie is actually in Sense and Sensibility? Now I'm curious to see it again.

    Love, Kathey

  3. this Sonnet is my favourite from Shakespeare.
    I also saw the movie "Sense and Sensibility" a few days ago and I love it. <3
    I love it not only because of the story (which is realy wonderful) but also for the actors that are playing in it: Hugh Grant, Alan Rickman, Hugh Laurie, Kate Winslet, emma Thompson, ...

  4. Hi, i also know this poem from the movie sense and sensibility, although i think in the spanish version they translated "ever fix mark" to a lighthouse, wich makes sense too, i guess it makes sense when there's adversity like one of the loved ones is sick and the other will remain like a lighthouse in the tempest until the sickness goes away, always strong and true, like love should be. Marianne unfortunately had to experience the heartbreak of a lover who made a promise and lied and went away, so she says the poem once more but with a sense of what love should be and not what Willoughbe made of it at the end.

  5. Morons...all of you. Hugh Laurie is originally from the UK. His "accent" is natural.

  6. I agree with your thoughts about love and how it can change but really it was the perfect sonnet for Marianne
    And Willoughby- and their story of love found and then lost - Marianne truly believed all those things - it defined her
    and then oddly because of that inner strength for love she was able to finally see Willoughby as someone who
    Could only recite the verse not ever able to live by it -