Shakespeares Lost Sonnets: A Restoration
of the Runes
Set VII, Runes 85-98: Texts and Comments
Eighth lines, Sonnets 85-98 (Set VII)
(Eighth lines, Set VII: Sonnets 85-98)
In polished form of well-refinèd pen
Giving him aid, my verse astonishèd;
And so my patent back again is swerving
4 That thou, in losing me, shall win much glory.
I will acquaintance strangle and look strange
To linger out a purposed overthrow.
All these I better in one general best;
8 Then that which on thy humor doth depend
Is writ in moods and frowns and wrinkles strange
Others, but stewards of their excellence,
Naming thy name. Blesses an ill report
12 To truths translated and for true things deemed
Like widowed wombs: After their lords decease
Or from their proud lap, pluck them where they grew.
Glosses: 1) line pun: In th [p = thorn, th] hole I shit forms well-refined, thin; 2) him aid puns on hymn..., Hamnet, Hamlet; 3) patent = claim on this (runic) method; 4) shall suggests S[ue] Hall, Wills daughter, with the line suggesting her marriage or Wills death; 4) pun: John [= in], loving my S. Hall 5) I will...and puns,I, Will, a quaint Anne see...Anne; 6) ...d overthrow puns dour th row, i.e., the verse line is gloomy (because it has no bad jokes?); 7) phallic puns include Awl, I bitter, etc.; 8) puns include Thin, witch hunt, high humor, and merd [excrement]...deepened; 9) frowns and wrinkles strange puns on S-rowns and tricks...; 10) Others puns on Oathers (i.e., sworn coterie members); 11) report is the subject of Blesses (v. intr.); 12) true things suggests plumb, erect penises; 14) puns include Ore, Whore, and prowd (i.e.,sporting a frontal projection).
Subtly polished formal structures
military figures color Will’s description and rationalization
of his “patented” runic method, the final analogy between
the Q texts and belatedly “fruitful” wombs (11-14) seems more
vital. Will’s thesis is that he’s biding his time, consciously
distancing himself from his friend and using indirect means by which his
verse will eventually accomplish its purpose.
Eye Napoli’s oar naval, reef, aye knee-deep; In th’ hole I
shit forms well-refinéd, peein’; In poly-shit, soar; rough,
eye Nate peein’; In Pole I shit; sore knave Will refined; in Polish’d
foreign offal, reason deepen; forne appears to have an altered
typepiece, n for m
emphatic downward acrostic codeline—I GATITAT[h] IONT
LO—as usual encodes ambiguous meanings. Possibilities include
these: “I ‘Judith’ joined low [silently],” “Eye
gay teat, a tie-on t[oo] low [t’ lo(ve)?],” “Eye Judith
at joint low,” “Eye Judith, John, till ‘O’,”
“‘I’ jetted aye shunned, low,” “Agitation
t’ low [i.e., neigh],” “Agitated John t’ low,”
“I get it—a shun t’ low,” “Eye get it, a
shunt low,” “Agitate a ‘shunt’ [cf. ‘cunt’]
low,”and “…a taint low.”
insistently meaningful letterstrings as OLT NOIT and IGATITAT...ION—suggesting,
e.g., “Old Knight” and “Agitation” (complete with
an agitated stutter)—imply careful, authorized manipulation. The
former instance exemplifies many such strings that seem, almost magically,
to let us hear pronunciations of the Era vocalized.