Friday, October 30, 2015

The Hamlet Complex

In which I have rewritten Shakespeare's To be or not to be monologue after reading The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt followed by The Fortress of Solitude by Jonathan Lethem, which both star a motherless boy coming of age.

1 To read, or not to read - that is not the question:
2 Rather it is shall my eyes bleed over
3 The repetitive selling points of character and indignation,
4 Or have my mind find a better source of entertainment
5 and forget this bildungsroman? To cry, to howl -
6 evermore- and by cry, I mean I see no end
7 to these hapless dreamers, these boys with
8 no mothers to soothe them. I date enough in my
9 paperless life to seek them in inked dreams. To cry, to howl -
10 To howl and wish these away, it is slight;
11 For I survived my own coming of age. And through this rage,
12 what a woman I have become,
13 Humbled by my misuse of mania. I still hold on
14 to the right that I deserve more than this.
15 To be a woman who can meet a man who can bear me,
16 Should I choose to bear another man of our own,
17 Who in time may grow into his own right to oppress me,
18 And hate himself for doing so? The duality of existence,
19 Of existential crisis, of the right to be on his own,
20 But still need me; and wonder if I am worthy
21 of bringing him into this world? None other than this mother,
22 Who could find the strength to
23 Look for life in a place of unforeseen death.
24 The landscape of my womb carved from stone,
25 Where a seed may look to find purchase
26 to again remind me of past implantations.
27 Am I always to remember you lost?
28 Reframed in my mind like a child left behind,
29 But resolute in my need to move on,
30 To flip the page and read on,
31 To lose sight of scorn; myself reborn,
32 Knowing that I could have never brought this life
33 To life without all the countermoves I bore. I sigh,
34 And seek solitude from mankind, long overdue,
35 I close my eyes, and find the words: To be continued.

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