(Also for ABC Wednesday and Magpie 90)
“Q” is for “Quotation”
This week’s Magpie prompt reminded me of a Shakespeare play, one I’m sure you’re familiar with. And of course when I think of Shakespeare I think of quotations.
Before we get to the quotation in question, let me set the scene.
The story really begins with a huge ball, an elegant party Old Man Capulet throws because he’s going to marry off his daughter Juliet to a man he has chosen for her.
But there’s a hitch: Juliet falls in love with another, a chap named Romeo, a Montague who showed up at the party uninvited.
The Capulets hate the Montagues and have for many decades. (No one alive remembers the reason for this feud; it just keeps rolling along under its own power.)
As you might imagine, everyone drank too much at the party, which happens at quite a few parties, I am informed. Old Man Capulet feels that life is good. However, he isn’t aware that his daughter has not only fallen in love with this Romeo fellow but is actually married to him.
Juliet knows her dad is going to insist she marry the other man; she’s despondent, wants to end it all. However, she is given a secret potion that will simulate death but allow her to regain consciousness later, and then she and Romeo can, hopefully, go off and live together.
She musters up the courage to drink the potion. The Capulets are overcome with grief at the news of what they believe is their daughter’s death and she is interred in the family’s burial vault.
A message is sent to Romeo to make sure he understands that the potion Juliet has taken will allow her to recover consciousness later. Unfortunately, tragically, he does not receive the message; he believes that Juliet has died and her body is in her family’s vault.
When he arrives he delivers these powerful lines (and this is the quotation I had in mind):
“Here lies Juliet,
And her beauty makes this vault a feasting presence full of light.
O my love, O my wife,
Death, that has sucked the honey of thy breath,
Hath had no power yet upon thy beauty.
I will stay with thee,
And never from this palace of dim night
1 year ago