Bush Reads Shakespeare.
In order to gain more culture, President George W. Bush has started taking courses in Shakespeare. I have graciously accepted an invitation to assist him in deciphering some of William Shakespeare's works.
Me: This week we will be reading 'A Midsummer Night's Dream'
GWB: What's a midsummer?
Me: That would be the middle of the summer.
GWB: Ok. So the people are all asleep in this play?
Me: No. Just wait, you will see. Let's start with Act 1 Scene 1.
Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour
Draws on apace; four happy days bring in
Another moon: but, O, methinks, how slow
This old moon wanes! she lingers my desires,
Like to a step-dame or a dowager
Long withering out a young man revenue.
GWB: Heh. Her name is Hippolyta? Bet she's fat.
Me: No, actually she is supposed to be quite beautiful. Theseus is anxious to be married to her and he wishes the next four days to go quickly.
GWB: Boy, this stuff is hard to read. What's with this Shakespeare guy anyway? Can't he just get to the point?
Me: It's artistic. Iambic pentameter is poetry. Now let's go on.
Four days will quickly steep themselves in night;
Four nights will quickly dream away the time;
And then the moon, like to a silver bow
New-bent in heaven, shall behold the night
Of our solemnities.
Me: Hippolyta is anxious as well, but she thinks the days will go quickly.
GWB: An optimist like me! I keep telling everybody this war will be over soon. Maybe if I had her to explain it, they'd believe it.
Me: Let's skip forward a bit shall we? Well go to Egeus' meeting with Theseus.
Full of vexation come I, with complaint
Against my child, my daughter Hermia.
Stand forth, Demetrius. My noble lord,
This man hath my consent to marry her.
Stand forth, Lysander: and my gracious duke,
This man hath bewitch'd the bosom of my child;
GWB: Woah, he touched her bosoms? No wonder this 'Eggy-us' guy is mad.
Me: No, he has stolen her heart. He wants Hermia to marry Demetrius but she is in love with Lysander.
Thou, thou, Lysander, thou hast given her rhymes,
And interchanged love-tokens with my child:
Thou hast by moonlight at her window sung,
With feigning voice verses of feigning love,
GWB: Love tokens? This play is dirty.
Me: No, you have a dirty mind. 'Love tokens' means things like flowers and candy. Read on.
And stolen the impression of her fantasy
With bracelets of thy hair, rings, gawds, conceits,
Knacks, trifles, nosegays, sweetmeats, messengers
Of strong prevailment in unharden'd youth:
With cunning hast thou filch'd my daughter's heart,
Turn'd her obedience, which is due to me,
To stubborn harshness: and, my gracious duke,
Be it so she; will not here before your grace
Consent to marry with Demetrius,
GWB: I get this guy's point. I woudn't want my daughters marrying anyone I didn't approve of. Especially if he's trying to win her over with gays.
Me: Good to see you are trying to pay attention, but he's not talking about gays. A nosegay is a small bouquet.
I beg the ancient privilege of Athens,
As she is mine, I may dispose of her:
Which shall be either to this gentleman
Or to her death, according to our law
Immediately provided in that case.
GWB: Woah, he wants to kill her? This guy is intense. What kind of freak is this Shakespeare? Sounds like Al Qaeda to me. Get Rumsfeld on the phone. I want to order a strategic bombing of William Shakespeare.
Me: I think that is enough for now.
Linked to: Stop the ACLU, Basil's Blog