VCCS Litonline Introduction to Literature             page 8 of 20
English 112 (English Composition II)

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 Sonnet 116--Two Readings

1 Let me not to the marriage of true minds

2 Admit impediments. Love is not love

3 Which alters when it alteration finds,

4 Or bends with the remover to remove.

5 Oh no! It is an ever fixed mark

6 That looks on tempests and is never shaken.

7 It is the star to every wandering bark,

8 Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.

9 Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks

10 Within his bending sickle's compass come.

11 Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,

12 But bears it out even to the edge of doom.

13 If this be error and upon me proved,

14 I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

This reading is probably the most rhythmic out of all those gathered at EducETH.  (Scroll or click down for Sonnet 116.)

This reading seems the most "sarcastic," perhaps,  but notice how the assertions in lines 5 and 7 are linked by echoing "it is" in the same emphasis.

phoneswht.gif (3335 bytes)Click here to listen to this sonnet being read. Try to follow the intonation to determine which are the loudest words in the poem.

Click here to listen to Ohio University's Richard Stevens reading the same sonnet. 

Hearing Differences

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Re-open your word processor* to answer these questions: What do you hear in these readings that is different (in addition to "beats" in line 12)?  How do these affect the tone or even theme of the poem?

(*Click here for a hint on re-opening a word processor.)

Visit the Wired for Books website at the University of Ohio for more poetry.

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