“L” is for “Love”
My guess is that quite a number of folks will choose this word for “L Day,” so I thought I’d better try to come up with something a bit different.
Okay, how’s this?
We begin with a king – as often happens in a Shakespeare play. You know what kings are like…
When they pose for their portraits they’re often decked out in warlike mode, in full armour, ready to whup the enemy.
But this is about a different king, the King of Navarre, a different kind of king.
He was a king who was an intellectual, a scholar, a man, not to overdo it, of letters. And he came up with a plan, a wonderful idea – at least, it seemed like a good idea at the time.
He gathered three of his best lords-in-waiting around him to tell them of his plan.
I’m not sure just how pleased they were to learn that what the King had in mind was that the four of them were to swear an oath to scholarship. They were all to go off to a sort of retreat where they were to devote themselves solely to the pursuit of knowledge, study and research. Said the King: “Our court shall be a little Academe, still and contemplative in living art.”
However, this would mean fasting – not a very popular idea just for starters – but also, and far more important, they were to avoid any contact with women for three years.
That should have allowed them to do quite a bit of homework. :-)
But before the plan could get well underway, politics entered the picture.
The Princess of France arrived to pay a state visit to the King. She arrived, as coincidence would have it, with three ladies-in-waiting, each of whom happened to be beautiful, delightful and charming.
You’ve pretty well figured out what happened next, right?
Each one of the King’s three henchmen quickly forgot about the oath and fell head over teakettle for one of the three ladies-in-waiting – who wouldn’t be doing any more waiting. :-)
And the King, of course, wound up with the Princess herself. The men found themselves using, when speaking with the ladies: “taffeta phrases, silken terms precise.”
All would have been well that ended well, but the ladies were suddenly called back to France. However, they very much wanted to see the guys again so they said they’d be back later. (It was kind of strange, since none of them was from Brooklyn, that they said, in effect, “Wait till next year!”)
And that, friends, was one of Will Shakespeare’s many takes on the word “Love,” from his play “Love’s Labour’s Lost.”
1 year ago