Friday, April 23, 2004

"All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players; They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages. At first the infant, Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms;

Then the whining school-boy, with his satchel And shining morning face, creeping like snail Unwillingly to school. And then the lover, Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad, Made to his mistress' eyebrow.

Then a soldier, Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard, Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel, Seeking the bubble reputation Even in the cannon's mouth.

And then the justice, In fair round belly with good capon lin'd, With eyes severe and beard of formal cut, Full of wise saws and modern instances; And so he plays his part.

The sixth age shifts Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon, With spectacles on nose and pouch on side, His youthful hose, well sav'd, a world too wide For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice, Turning again toward childish treble,pipes And whistles in his sound.

Last scene of all, That ends this strange eventful history, Is second childishness and mere oblivion; Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans every thing.

What a beautiful Poem! And I remember my Best friend Annapurna's son 'Makrand Shukla' , young film Star 'Ronnie', who played son of Jackie shroff and Dimple Kapadia in 'Kash' movie - He dramatised this Poem so well that we always had a 'Once More' at every function. Later, It so happened he almost became a Shakespeare Poem 'Hero' and all kids wanted to immitate him.

Well, this April 23 we recall Shakespeare Literature as we observe World Book Day. Shakespeare occupies a position unique in world literature. His works include 37 plays, including comedy, Tragedy and Historical alongwith Poems, sonnets. Shakespeare is astonishingly clever with words and images, so that his mental energy, when applied to intelligible human situations, finds full and memorable expression, convincing and imaginatively stimulating and to read his stuff is a rich experience for a life time. It has ever been great to read 'Romeo & Juliet', Hamlet, Midsummer Night's dream, Tempest, As you Like It, Merchant of Venice, King Lear and all the stuff that we taught in Literature Lessons at School. Gone are the days and no such Literature now is ever known to kids in India - Leave English, not even then rich Gujarati Literature exist in their routine or Exclusive Reads! Will the British Library in Ahmedabad, in addition to showing a week long videos of Shakespeare, also adopt a week long exposure of Gujarati Literature?

- Blossomsmile ilaxi
Editor, Kidsfreesouls

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