Wednesday, 4 May 2016
Thinking about Shakespeare
Shakespeare's plays and poems can be read and enjoyed time and time again, not for nothing is he still so popular after five hundred years, all over the world, For surely he expresses such a profound knowledge of human nature that we can all relate to his tales and stories. They are like fairy tales for adults, we know the story, we know what's coming and we know if it's going to end happily or not, but we are still hooked right from the start at the beauty of Shakespeare's words, the way he uses language to express the feelings that are in the human heart.
Like the magic of the story books Shakespeare can transport you to the scene of adventure, passion, romance, comedy or tragedy.
Yesterday I went to see the latest film version of 'Macbeth', starring Michael Fassbender and Marion Cottilard as Macbeth and Lady Macbeth.
What schoolchild hasn't had a giggle changing the chant of the three witches
'Double, double toil and trouble' into 'double, double toilet trouble', or maybe that was just me!
So I sat back and in spite of the gloomy, frightening scenes I enjoyed listening to the familiar words and feeling the actors pleasure in reciting the words of someone they must consider the greatest writer of plays of all time. I thought of all the life lessons there are, the genius of Shakespeare seeing the depths of the human soul
Right from the start we realize how grief can make people mad, that the human mind can only take so much suffering, how the love of power can corrupt.
How much easier if Macbeth and his lady had been united by their love for each other and gone off roaming in the gloaming.
'What's done is done,'
'There's daggers in men's smiles'.
It was filmed on the beautiful Isle of Skye and reminded me of a song my mum sang at bed time
Speed bonny boat like a bird on the wing
Onward the sailor's cry.
Carry the lad that was born to be king,
Over the sea to Skye.