My mistress's eyes are nothing like the sun ; Coral is far more red than her lip 's red; If snow be white , why then her breasts are dun , If hair be wires, black wires grow on her head. I have seen roses damasked, red and white, But no such roses see I in her cheeks ; In some perfumes there is more delight Than the breath with which my mistress reeks.
I love to hear her speak , yet well I know, Music hath a far more pleasing sound; I grant I never saw a goddess go; My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground. And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare As any she belied with false compare.
and that she far outdistances any goddess in her merely human beauties and her mortal approachability.
10/18/11 Teresa Yuh-yi Tan 談玉儀
Sonnet 130: Parody of Beauty 1 10/18/11 Teresa Yuh-yi Tan 談玉儀 Conventional Comparison Shakespeare’s parody Eyes like the sun Eyes are nothing like the sun Coral lips Coral is far more red than her lips Snow skin and breast Dun breast (provocative dark) Golden hair Hairs of black wires Roses growing in cheeks No such roses in her cheeks Beloved breath sweeter than all perfumes “ reek”: steamy, sweaty and unsavoury smells
Sonnet 130: Parody of Beauty 2 10/18/11 Teresa Yuh-yi Tan 談玉儀 Conventional Comparison Shakespeare’s parody Encounters with goddesses His beloved is beautiful without being a goddess. “ tread on the ground” “ rare”—fine and unusual quality “ belie”: to tell lies about “ With false compare”