In the past, National “Talk Like Shakespeare Day” has like a prefatory defalcator stealthily crept in upon my dawning awareness. Not so this year.
During this last year, under the inspiration of Sir Patrick Stewart and at the admonition of a reader, I undertook to record my own surely inadequate readings of all 154 of the Bard’s well-known Sonnets. Well- known, I say, though not will much conviction. I suspect that their reading in the schools has been scant of late. Indeed I speculate that fewer and fewer young skulls-full-of-mush have been exposed to the opera of Avon’s Swan. It’s, after all, racist… or something.
On this 113th day of the year I have of yore posted short vignettes gleaned from the Bard’s lesser know oeuvres. Last year, for example, we read part of Two Gentlemen of Corona. On another anniversary of Will’s birth – and also his death! – two dies natales on one day – we explored A Most Tragikal Hystory of Obama I and The Trumping of the Shrew.
This year I became distracted from Shakespeare’s lesser know play Trump’s Ballots Lost – a dark comedy involving fraud and elder abuse – by my alarming discovery that some of the pages I was studying were actually signed by Christopher Marlowe. No, really… Christopher Marlowe. Over and over again on the margins with increasingly unsteady hand.
I’m still working on deciphering the wretched thing, hastily scribbled as it was on the back of cocktail napkins and stained paper placemats from some thermopolium in Deptford. It’s an abruptly unfinished play called, The Tragical History of the Rise and Fall of Doctor Fauci. A curious work, along with a sonnet possessed of a rather inept incipit, “Here’s looking at thee, Kyd, thou three inch fool…”. That “three inch fool image could only be ripped off from the “shrew play”, though the beginning of that phrase also rang a far off bell. It’ll come to me.
Bottom line: I think that “Here’s looking at thee, Kyd” and and Doctor Fauci were really written by Shakespeare himself and not Marlowe at all, though Shakespeare took great pains to make it look like Marlowe’s work! The practicing of the signature, the strange choice of paper, from Deptford. Think about it.
Anyway, I’ll get these out to the readership in good course.
Meanwhile, Happy Talk Like Shakespeare Day!
And remember this sage advice you male readers out there….