Monday, May 16, 2011

Magpie 66

Polonius, the Lord Chancellor, can’t figure out just what’s the matter with the young prince.
He should be content; the country has a new king, a queen who is obviously very happy – all Denmark is celebrating.
But moody young Hamlet just sits with his nose in a book.
Polonius is determined to find out what is wrong. Shakespeare’s famous scene in Act Two beautifully sums up what happens when a stodgy, tedious old bureaucrat tries to deal with, or even understand, a young guy who is astute and sharp-witted.
The Lord Chancellor approaches the Prince.
Polonius: Do you know me, my lord?
Hamlet: Excellent well; you are a fishmonger.
Polonius: Not I, my lord.
Hamlet: Then I would you were so honest a man.
Polonius: What are you reading, my lord?
Hamlet: Words, words, words.
Polonius: What is the matter?
Hamlet: Between who?
Polonius: I mean, the matter that you read, my lord.
Hamlet: Slanders, sir. Though I most powerfully and potently believe that you could grow as old as I am, if like a crab you could go backward.
Polonius: My lord, I will take my leave of you.
Hamlet: You could not take from me anything I would not more willingly part with – except my life, except my life, except my life.


Shari said...

Oh the sarcastic retorts and wicked wit of the young.

Anonymous said...

Dynamite post!

Kay L. Davies said...

A delightful conversation, Berowne. I wonder if the Lord Chancellor understood a word Hamlet said, besides "fishmonger"!
— K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

Kathe W. said...

very clever fellow!

Tumblewords: said...

Lovin' this dialogue - more than one giggle and shifting eyebrows. Well done!

vivinfrance said...

This is just brilliant! I love the way H deals with "I'll take my leave of you." Squelch, what a put-down.

Jenne' R. Andrews said...

what fun-- very imaginative response to prompt--xxxj

Lyn said...

That Hamlet..quite a kidder, for a serious always turn on a light..thanks!!

Tess Kincaid said...


Berowne said...

Tess K.: "Perfect."
And a perfect comment, if I may say so -- thanks.

Berowne said...

Lyn: "You always turn on a light..thanks!!"
That's because I spent most of my life in the dark. :-)

Berowne said...

My best thanks to some friends who regularly drop by: Tumblewords, vivinfrance, Kathe W, Kaye L Davies, just to mention a few.

hyperCRYPTICal said...

The young are very astute and see more of us than we know.

Anna :o]

Steve Isaak said...

Wonderful dialogue pice.

Imperfectly_Leah_Too said...

I ditto steve

jabblog said...

Excellent - both Shakespeare and you:-)

Berowne said...

My thanks for some welcome comments from Steve, Leah and jabblog.

lucychili said...

a telling encounter =)

ds said...

Love it! "Words, words, words..." If only Polonius had known when to keep his mouth shut (but of course he didn't and so he got it, literally[?] in the end).

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