Paraphrase – Sonnet 30 by W. Shakespeare When to the sessions of sweet silent thought I summon up remembrance of things past, I sigh the lack of many a thing I sought, And with old woes new wail my dear time's waste: When the courtroom goes silent I think of the past I grieve my failure to achieve all that I wanted, And I sorrowfully remember that I wasted the best years of my life: Then can I drown an eye, unus'd to flow, For precious friends hid in death's dateless night, And weep afresh love's long since cancell'd woe, And moan the expense of many a vanish'd sight: Then I cry, although I am not used to crying, For dear friends now in death's unending night, And cry again over sorrows that were long ago healed, And grieve the loss of many things that I have seen and loved: Then can I grieve at grievances foregone, And heavily from woe to woe tell o'er The sad account of fore-bemoaned moan, Which I new pay as if not paid before. Then can I mourn over past griefs again, And sadly speak my woes over and over Reliving sorrows I’ve already grieved Paying my sorrow account, as if I had not paid before. But if the while I think on thee, dear friend, All losses are restor'd and sorrows end. But if I think of you while I am in this state of sadness, dear friend, All my losses are compensated for and my sorrow ends.
Paraphrase – Sonnet 71 by W. Shakespeare No longer mourn for me when I am dead Then you shall hear the surly sullen bell Give warning to the world that I am fled From this vile world, with vilest worms to dwell: Nay, if you read this line, remember not The hand that writ it; for I love you so That I in your sweet thoughts would be forgot Don’t cry for me when I am dead, When you hear the funeral bell Announce to the world that I am gone From this world to live with the grave worms If you read this line, don’t remember The hand that wrote it; I love you so much That I would rather have you forget me If thinking about me will make you sad If thinking on me then should make you woe. O, if, I say, you look upon this verse When I perhaps compounded am with clay, Do not so much as my poor name rehearse. But let your love even with my life decay, Lest the wise world should look into your moan And mock you with me after I am gone. If you look at this poem When I am rotting in the earth Don’t even speak my name, But let your love die with my death So that cruel people in this world do not use Your grief to mock you when I am gone.
Paraphrase – Sonnet 54 by Edmund Spenser Of this World’s theatre in which we stay, My love like the spectator idly sits Beholding me that all the pageants play, Disguising diversely my troubled wits. Sometimes I joy when glad occasion fits, And mask in mirth like to a comedy: Soon after when my joy to sorrow flits, I wail and make my woes a tragedy. Yet she, beholding me with constant eye, Delights not in my mirth nor rues my smart: But when I laugh she mocks, and when I cry She laughs and hardens evermore her heart. What then can move her? if nor mirth nor moan, She is no woman, but a senseless stone. In theater of life my love sits and watches the play; She watches me and pretends that the things I say are said for other reasons. Sometimes I am happy for good reason And hide my happiness, like in a comedy, And afterwards, when I'm sad again I weep like I am in a tragedy. But I know that my love is watching and not participating in my sadness or happiness But she makes fun of me when I laugh and when I cry, her heart grows colder What can make her feel for me? If not happiness and not weeping, She's a stone, feeling nothing.
Paraphrase – Sonnet 17 by F. Petrarch A rain of bitter tears falls from my face And a tormenting wind blows with my sighs Whenever toward you I turn my eyes, Whose absence cuts me from the human race. It is true that the mild and gentle smiles Do soothe ardour of my strong desire And rescue me from my martyrdom's fire While I intently look upon your guiles; But my spirits become suddenly cold When I see, leaving, the acts I behold Stolen from me by my stars' fateful ray; Loosened at last by the amorous keys, The soul deserts the heart to seek your breeze, And in deep thought it tears itself away. A cloud-burst of tears falls from my face And sighs pour out of me like a rain storm Whenever I see you; Your absence makes me feel like giving up on life. Your warm and gentle smiles Soothe my intense feelings and desire And rescue me from wanting to throw my life Away when I see your teasing looks; But I grow sad and cold-hearted When I see you leaving Stolen away from me, a little star, by a sun; You’ve been set free the one who holds love’s key to your heart, The soul leaves the heart to seek you, And tears itself away in deep thought.