Procrastinating with Shakespeare!

Something tough about writing an essay about Shakespeare is that I get caught up in all these wonderfully arresting images. This one was so literally delicious that I had to stop and write about it… or at least that’s what I tell myself to feel better for procrastinating.

When Hamlet meets his school buddy Horatio at his home/castle in Elsinore, Denmark, Hamlet jokingly remarks, “We’ll teach you to drink deep ere you depart,” but seriously asks his friend why he is not back at school. On a more somber note, Horatio responds: “My lord, I came to see your father’s funeral.” In a classically emo retort, Hamlet responds: “I think it was to see my mother’s wedding.”

Hamlet’s not entirely wrong for being so snarky: his mother Gertrude marries her brother-in-law, Claudius, shortly after her husband, Hamlet Sr., mysteriously dies. The prince’s next remarks to Horatio are just so fantastic that they deserve to be in-set (normally a taboo for quotes with three or less lines, but I think taboo is what we’re going for!), and broadcasted across the Internet:

Thrift, thrift, Horatio. The funeral baked meats

Did coldly furnish forth the marriage tables.

Wow. Showing, once again, his mastery of imagery, Shakespeare has managed to depict such a profound life-change in such a mundane way. It’s sad and it’s bitter, but Hamlet maintains control over the situation by joking about it.

…And after those lines, I just want to laugh every time I sit down to a delicious meal of leftovers.

Thanks for procrastinating with me today! Back to the grindstone for this bardolator!

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