Sonnet 31 of Sir Philip Sidney

A Cornfield By Moonlight With The Evening Star c.1830.  Samuel Palmer (1805-1881)

AG: So, there’s another interesting.. there’s a line in Sonnet 31. (of Sir Philip Sidney)  The whole thing is great and it’s a very sad sweet sonnet. It was also one of (Jack) Kerouac’s favorites of all sonnets – “With how sad steps, O Moon..” (that’s a great line!) – “With how sad steps, O Moon, thou climb’st..” page 177, Sonnet 31) –

With how sad steps, O Moon, thou climb’st the skies!
How silently, and with how wan a face!
What, may it be that even in heav’nly place
That busy archer his sharp arrows tries! ( in other words, love pains)

“Sure, if that long-with-love-acquainted eyes”   (isn’t that great! – “that long-with love-acquainted eye”, straight out of Marilyn Monroe and Dostoevsky..(and) everybody, like a long-with-love-acquainted eye )  – Who here… You know people with “long and love-acquainted eyes”? – It’s really a great line, it’s totally romantically intelligent, so smart, you know that..just to have that charming.. to know about people who have “long-with-love-acquainted eyes” (long-hyphen-with-love-hyphen-acquainted) – “long-with-love-acquainted eyes” – and what a funny thing to put in the line! – “Sure..” “Sure, if that long-with-love-acquainted eyes” – Yeah, that’s great – Just that one line is enough to turn me on. It’s so mellow. It bespeaks so much personal experience and so much intelligence to be able to say it right off,you know, assuming everybody knows about long love-acquainted eyes. Everybody probably does

“Sure, if that long-with-love-acquainted eyes /Can judge of love, thou feel’st a lover’s case,/ I read it in thy looks; thy languish’d grace/ To me, that feel the like, thy state descries./ Then, ev’n of fellowship, O Moon, tell me, Is constant love deem’d there but want of wit? (In other words, that people think you’re crazy if you have a constant love affair – “want of wit”, of intelligence, whatever, smartness)/Are beauties there as proud as here they be?/ Do they above love to be lov’d, and yet/ Those lovers scorn whom that love doth possess?/ Do they call virtue there ungratefulness?”

Well he might be a little bit explaining about being put down or being frustrated but I kind of… he knows his “long-with-love-acquainted eyes”

[Audio for the above can be heard here, beginning at approximately thirty-two-and-three-quarter minutes in and concluding at approximately thirty-five-and-a-half  minutes in]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *