Sonnet 130 is an interesting poetry because it flips the concept of feminine beauty on its head and gives the reader a different perspective on what it's like to love a woman, flaws and all, despite her flaws. This sonnet is most famous for its comparison between the beloved and the sun, but it also contains some very strange language.
Here are the first three lines of the poem:
Let me not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments. Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds, or bends with the remover to remove: O no; it is an ever-fixed mark/That looks on tempests and is never shaken.
This sonnet was probably written for someone who had just lost their heart to another person, probably a romantic rival. As you can see from the opening line, the poet doesn't want to admit this new love isn't as strong as his old one. He does this by comparing his new love to the sun, even though the sun is a symbol of eternal truth and stability.
The next part of the poem is where the image of the beloved as a sun comes in. The poet says that his new love is more beautiful than the sun, but only in the morning and evening star phases.
Sonnet 130 is a love sonnet in reverse. It says that the woman is really attractive, but that it is vital for this poet to have a realistic vision of the woman he loves. The poet wishes to see his lady objectively and to appreciate her beauty in concrete words. He wants to avoid being swayed by emotion when looking at her.
This sonnet was probably written by Shakespeare as a response to a poetic competition held by one of his patrons, Lord Herbert of Cherbury. The prize for this contest was not very significant, but it was enough for Shakespeare to spend some time thinking about love and to come up with some remarkable lines concerning this subject.
Shakespeare lived in an age when love was seen as a powerful force controlling people's actions. It was believed that love can make us do strange things such as kill others for our loved ones or die for them. This belief influenced poets throughout Europe at the time. They used love poems to show how much they admired their ladies and to ask for their hands in marriage.
Sonnet 130 is one of these poems. It begins with the poet saying that he is just a nobody who has never been famous or rich. Then he goes on to say that he does not deserve any love because she could be interested in more worthy men. Finally, he admits that even if she did love him, he would still be inadequate because he is unable to see his lady objectively.
When read as a satire, "Sonnet 130" is rather amusing. Shakespeare states in one of the lines of "Sonnet 130," "I love to hear her talk" (Shakespeare 9). This demonstrates Shakespeare's genuine affection for the mistress, despite his description of her as less than perfect in appearance and demeanor. Satire involves ridiculing something that is accepted by society at large as true or correct, but which actually is not. For example, many people believe that marriage should be between one man and one woman, but Shakespeare shows that this is not true with his portrayal of Romeo and Juliet. They are two young lovers who marry without their families' consent and then die tragically together.
Shakespeare uses irony in "Sonnet 130." Irony is when what appears to be an opinion or statement on someone's part is actually a joke. For example, if I say "Shakespeare is a great poet," this would be an opinion statement. But if I add "as long as he is not my son," then the statement becomes a joke because it seems like I am saying that Shakespeare is not a great poet. Irony can also be used when speaking directly to an audience, such as when I say "Good morning" to you all today. This statement could be taken as an opinion, but since I am addressing an audience, then it is more likely that I am making a joke.