My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun;
Coral is far more red than her lips' red;
If snow be white,why then her are dun;
If hairs be wire, black wires grow on her head.
I have seen roses damask'd, red and white,
But no such roses see I in her cheeks;
And in some perfumes is there more delight
Than in her breath than my mistress reeks.
I love to hear her speak, yet well I know
That 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.
Sonnet 130, Shakespeare
"It was all a matter of a goddess - dark, hidden, deadly, horribly desirable. When did her image first dawn?"
Nothing Like the Sun, Anthony Burgess
Since yesterday, I have been thinking about one recommending one book to celebrate the Bard. It is Anthony Burgess' fictionalized biography Nothing Like The Sun. Burgess also wrote a "proper" biography of Shakespeare, for the little we know about the man, which is more a study about his work, and it is a great read in itself, but Nothing Like the Sun is a true masterpiece. It is everything Shakespeare in Love, to which it was unfairly compared, failed to be: intelligent, genuine and above all Shakespearean. Read more about the novel here and it gives you an idea of why it's so great. Here I am merely recommending it. For anyone who love Shakespeare, this is a must-read.