Today is the birthday of William Shakespeare. Yves Bonnefoy has written a letter to Shakespeare, which you can read over at the Fortnightly Review. I found it very absorbing indeed, a richly textured piece of imaginative criticism. Here’s a passage where I felt sparks flying: “This stage with nothing but itself–this metaphysical place, in short–mirrors the dimensions of the hope we peg to language. It offers itself unreservedly to what is sought by poets, always much more than the letter of their work. It permits us to glimpse what is unsayable in their perception of the world, or hidden in their relation to themselves: two things that are inexpressible. Their conjunction, their mutual consumption, is the event of poetry….”
That’s just a little taste. I promise you, this piece will absorb you completely.