Shakespeare could look you in the eye and tell you who you are – so well-versed in the ways of people he was. He would then place you upon the stage, and have an actor have a go at you. With puns and foibles and insights.
Thus do I repeat my Shakespeare (though not exactly Shakespearean) homage.
Is as bare as my lady’s ass
In his lordship’s bedchamber.
In the most knockabout way,
In the palace lawns of the imagination.
There’s many a dip ‘twixt the trap and the lip.
It fares little better
Than hastily strewn boards
Covering parched ground,
With barely enough elevation
To keep the understanding masses at bay.
Were one fool enough
To come from out the wings,
And at centre front
Begin a soliloquy about the beauty
Of the wretched arena on which he stands,
To fight the resulting
There would not be found one drop of piss
From any a Thespian’s hose.
This sacrilege to be spoken?
Even the flag atop the pole knows
The magic is not yet arrived.
A stage without commercial trappings:
without solid doors and thick drapes;
uncluttered by pillars and arches,
tables and chairs,
windows and fireplaces;
A stage revealing all its secrets.
Profound as emptiness.
A stage in wait.
For in this world writ small
– as in the globe around –
the audience has nothing to know,
nothing to learn,
until the actor makes an entrance,
prepares to fight past our eyes
to battle with those thoughts
which lurk in sheltered halls.
What’s Hecuba to him?
Why – nothing.
Merely a name in a script,
A cue at which to turn his profile thus.
It is what Hecuba becomes to we who wait,
that turns the key upon the heavy gate.
~DE BA. UE