“Beauty is not in the face; beauty is a light in the heart.”- Kahlil Gibran. I am going to compare, contrast and analysis between “Sonnet 130”, by William Shakespeare and “The Harlem Dancer”, by Claude McKay. Both poems and sonnets are English and have fourteen lines or stanzas, and the rhyme scheme of ABABCDCDEFEFGG, which points out beauty in women.
A sonnet is a fixed patterned poem that expresses a single, complete thought or idea. Sonnet comes from the Italian word “sonetto”, which means “little song”. Poem, on the other hand, is English writing that has figurative language, and written in separate lines that usually have a repeated rhyme, but don’t all the time. The main and interesting thing is that these two poems or sonnets admire and compare the beauty of a specific woman, with tone, repetition, imagery, and sense of sound.
William Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 130”, was published in the mid-1590, and published with the rest of Shakespeare’s sonnets in 1609. The sonnet has fourteen lines, and divided into three quatrains and one couplet at the end. The rhyme scheme is cross rhyme, with the last two lines being couplets that rhyme. The sonnet compares between nature and the poets’ lover or mistress. He shows a more realistic view of his lover. Needless to say his significant other wasn’t physically attractive, yet he loved her inside beauty. Today we may use the term, “It’s not all about looks, but what’s inside”.
The speaker uses metaphors to describe his mistress’ eyes to being like the sun; her lips being red as coral; cheeks like roses; breast white as snow; and her voices sounding like music. In the first few lines of the sonnet, the speaker view and tells of his mistress as being ugly, as if he was not attracted to her. He gives the sense that he is disgusted by her. Pity and sorrow for his lover, he shows no signs of beauty in her, just her love. Shakespeare makes the sonnet come to life with sense imagery through his use of descriptive words. However, in the third quatrain, the speaker admits that he loves her. He describes her voice as being pleasing, and that his lover, unlike goddesses, walks on the ground. He recognizes that she is not perfect, he sees her flaws and imperfections, yet, and he still loves her. He accepts her faults and loves her the way she is,...