Tiffany succumbs to (shakes)peare pressure. And yet lives our contest!

In this un-retouched photo the editor-in-chief attempts to break free from one of the many interns at the towers that are A Word with You Press.

And how can it be, oh my beloved Literati, that one so frivolous as thine own Editor-in-Chief (that tis eternally moi) could seduce from the ether of cyberspace a story of such poetic grandeur?

Pleased to say that Shakespeare has an heiress, and though he be the bard, the heiress to the quill and ink and parchment be the beard.  Tiffany Beard, to be precise. She pens by the name Tiffany Monique, but we love her anyway.

Tiffany enters our contest in honor of Peggy Dobbs with this offering, preceded by this explanation…What If Juliette had lived?

Her email to me, followed by an act that is hard to swallow–oops!  I mean FOLLOW!

“Just so you have an idea of where this would take place. Everyone exits with their lessons learned, and Juliet awakes in a stupor of pain and blood loss. She grieves her husband in one last monologue before Romeos’ ghost (which, if this were acted out, may or not be visible, per the director’s muse) either leads her offstage, or she falls over his body and the lights go out.

This was a wonderful way to spend a Saturday.”

 

With words, song & prayer,

TiMo

Here’s where you can read me:
And here is

But Biding, I Live Beyond My Own Love

by Tiffany Monique

Juliet rouses half-conscious over Romeo. She is bleeding from her stab wound and in great pain.

My lover dead and nothing shall be done

And I, a widow and failed suicide;

My hour of twilight and I see no fault.

T’was love that moved me thus; and thus I move

With this my life’s blood spilt, still flowing life

Juliet pulls out the dagger. It falls on Romeo’s body. She caresses his face with her bloody hand.

My budding blossom, corrupt and fading,

Or perhaps, now wakening to a truth.

I may not die here.  I could live for him.

My life’s blood, poisoned with this rank knowledge

That neither life nor death will end my love,

And this pain as sweet as it is morbid.

My Romeo is no more. Oh cruel fate!

The warp and weft of loss innocences

Cast us down from joy; laughing whilst we died.

Our marriage bed thus turned into a grave,

And yet here I lay cast back from Hades;

Rejected both by life and death am I–

To look upon the lips now cold to me

The arms with haste retreat away from me

Both sepulcher and marriage bed denied.

She takes his hand.

Let me make of him a sweet eulogy–

Him who holds my heart but now not my hand;

For Romeo. Only for Romeo.

Do I live or die or reach or rest here?

My heart betwixt my fingers slipping sand

In spite of my death. I can feel my life.

Reason with me now why the dagger sings

And why the pain hums as I bleed away;

The sentence LIFE for the fair Juliet

Even as Romeo will don his wings.

More fool I to sit here as the crone would.

No more young maiden; never mother be.

My husband in dream and reality.

On our most hidden wedding night he came

And planted his root, but it did not seed.

And now his dagger. And again my blood

No, I cannot live. To whom do I plead?

Oh nurse! Apothecary! Kind Friar!

My voice a whispered prayer to my own self–

Survive to lie here crying and lonely.

No charm to move me and I will not go!

Juliet tries to take the dagger but is too weak and drops it to the ground.

My tortured treasure here with Romeo.

Ah! Pain renews me. Has my prayer been heard?

To see him shortly, I would stab again!

Had I the strength to; it would be just so.

Eviscerate myself happily, yes!

She falls over on to Romeo’s body.

My head becomes stone, heavy it lays down

Again on his chest, cooler than before.

Would that I could slake my thirst for his lips

But weariness brings its own heavy crown.

She attempts to run her fingers over his body.

Perhaps a touch then; blessed fingertip

Run scores of courses over his body.

Leave memories of morning lovemaking.

My husband and I consummated once

And now those trails with fingertips bloody.

My Romeo. My freedom and my death.

To question my choice to die with no thought

Of my life before Romeo claimed me,

Before I even thought to claim myself.

I was love’s fool. And for my love I fought

And died to live and see him, die again.

My breath is short upon my breast my love.

Do meet me at the gate to then usher

The putrefaction of both our bodies;

Yours slightly before mine as I follow.

And what of now? I cleave to you my love.

I’m yours in life and death to satiate.

If I die, I die for you and still live

A promise kept; a promise still keeping.

And if I live, I swear it’s not too late

In grave grotesqueries we shall still be!

You are the king of my mortal decay

And yet, I defy somehow your mandate

To live and die at your behest my love.

Did you not do that for me? Show the way!

So that my womb will only spawn your dreams.

Your decomposing children in me grow–

I yearn to mother. Perhaps now in death

We shall rule the ghosts that shall come of us.

Our mortal coils a harvest that will show

The madness of our fated love and deaths;

A song of youthful frenzy turned to blood.

Juliet begins singing softly

Your name, a noose I tied about my neck

Refrains of a song sung in misery

Of families whose hate bred hate and love.

Oh death my dance partner, may he cut in?

I am and am not yours to command now.

My eyes see nothing, my fingertips numb–

Yes, blessed sleep with him, my Romeo.

Juliet gasps and reaches out.

My husband here and shall now lead me out!

###

art@timobe.com / 619-292-8772 / www.timobe.com (please post link)

24 comments

  1. Salvatore Buttaci says:

    Willy would be proud of you, Tiffany. You’ve brought the old bard back with your splendid iambic-pentametric poetry. Kudos to you!

  2. tlrelf says:

    I love the premise of this and you are quite a poet! My daughter has the drama bug, and of course loves Shakespeare. One of the things she reminded me of the other day was that Romeo and Juliet were teenagers. . .eloquent ones, but teenagers nonetheless. I think you’ve captured that existential angst!

  3. Parisianne Modert says:

    Here is a tale added to what thought complete that neither heaven nor earth could deny. O, tears of blood brought forth from Juliet for her Romeo. What fate has claimed his ghost that the living can but deny. Very interesting and moving concept of Juliet’s awakening to a second chance at a life she is too weak to attack once more, yet to melancholy to live. This space in-between loss and weakness is powerfully captured. So far in this contest this is my favorite story.

  4. Ken Weene says:

    Here I always thought Juliet revived and went on to marry Macbeth despite their differences over his dog, Damned Spot. Ah well, better to have loved and had a soliloquy than to have never been in angst or heat.

  5. I can see the stage, the dark figures prone, the smell of death and blood and a ghostly survival. The concept is splendid and you pull it off splendidly. My belled hood bows to the tips of my exaggerated pointed shoes. One amazing entry.

    • Glclark says:

      “I can see the stage, the dark figures prone, the smell of death and blood and a ghostly survival.” Stang! When I started reading your comment I thought you were talkin’ about the morning after that last bachelor party at Cheater’s Bar! But alas, you were paying homage to the brilliant writing of our new friend, Tiffany.

  6. Glclark says:

    Tiffany. We have all heard since we were old enough to say Shakespeare that he may have had a ghost writer. I’m thinkin’ that in a previous life you might have been one of those. I may be a dumb cowboy but I do know something about Shakespeare and you have obviously studied his works in depth to be able to mimic his style so beautifully. Hats off to you and can’t wait for your next entry.

  7. Diane Cresswell says:

    Tiffany either you were Shakespeare in a past life or you were channeling him. Either way – this is spectacular. And I understood it completely so maybe your current voice had a better way of saying things that ol’ Shaky did in the past. Whatever – you done good!!!! Love it.

    • HAHAHAHA! “Shaky”… I love it! Thank you so much. I wanted to try something special for Peggy. I read it out loud and felt all corseted, so I’m hoping that Peggy enjoys it! Thanks for liking it so much!

  8. Tisha Jones Deutsch says:

    Clever and heart wrenching and dramatic and intriguing and even a little bit humorous (am I allowed to say that?). Great flow, interesting read! This clearly displays the uniqueness of your talent.

    • I’m so unique… just like everybody else, lol… that’s something my Mom would say. I’m glad the notes of humor were noticed. It’s kinda hard to write something that takes itself so seriously without wanting to put a teeny bit of ludicrous in it. Thank you!

Comments are closed.