My Choice, My Love, My Life.

Trying to push forward,
to get through okay,
knowing that eventually,
I'll be somewhere,

Eventually I'll be happy,
living far away,
maybe even bowing,
upon the wicked stage.

A hard life ahead,
I know that much is true,
but if today I work harder,
tomorrow I'll be through.

Off in the distance,
chasing my dreams,
won't let others affect me,
with their wicked schemes.

Because even the most beautiful,
have a dark side too,
I just have to ignore them,
and hope I can stay true.

True to myself,
in following these dreams,
this wickedness not evergreen,
not as unchanging as the sea.

I can find a way to break it,
not let it bother me,
I'm off to chase, bigger, better things,
not stay,
in this city.

I've already achieved so much,
now I'm off to achieve more,
not letting anything stop me,
putting myself before.

I know it may be hard,
but it's my path, mine alone,
no matter what others say,
they'll have to be shown.

And when I accomplish what I want,
I can laugh and sing,
for suddenly I know,
I can accomplish anything.

I'm not going to sit and wait,
while others produce art,
I am going to be in control,
I'll make my journey start.

by Kyra Kavanagh

Comments (4)

A continuation of the apologia for his philandering that the poet admits to in the previous sonnet. It also takes up, though perhaps in a less passionate manner, the idolatry theme of sonnet 105. The poet confesses to his swervings from the path of true love, but asserts that he returns refreshed and with a renewed sense of the divinity and wonder of his former love for the youth. Nothing has changed, if anything his love has increased, and he hopes and trusts that he will be welcomed by the beloved, just as he hopes ultimately for Christian redemption and a return to Abraham's bosom.
Commentators have understandably seen in this sonnet and the following one ambiguous references to Shakespeare's career as actor and playwright. The references seem to be rueful and resigned, indicating that he might have wished for better birth and fortune. But it must be admitted that the brief comments that he here makes and in the next one on 'public means that public manners breeds etc.' do not amount to much, and it would be difficult to build a biography on them.
Attitudes to players in the 16th and early 17th centuries were ambiguous. The stage was frequented by many of the wealthy and powerful, and much admired in legal circles, but there was a strong tradition that it fostered and encouraged immorality. The theatres were situated on the South Bank, outside the jurisdiction of the London authorities, in an area renowned for its taverns and brothels. Nevertheless a theatrical career could bring respectability in the end, as Shakespeare's own record testifies, and that of others such as Heminge, Condell, Burbage, Chapman and Jonson. In the end the growth of Puritanism killed off the theatre in England, but not before Shakespeare's death. Puritanism was strong even in Elizabethan times, but not strong enough to overturn the favours bestowed on theatrical companies by Elizabeth and her court. The same could be said of James's time. Nevertheless some of the hostility had an effect, and it is possible that the 'brand' mentioned in the next sonnet was the stigma of belonging to the theatre with all the supposedly dissolute practices and morals that such membership implied.
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