Posted tagged ‘“Through Tattered Clothes Small Vices Do Appear’

“Through Tattered Clothes” – Shakespearean (?) Sonnet

June 27, 2012

“Through Tattered Clothes Small Vices Do Appear” (Before Going Out Almost Anywhere)

Even nearing ninety, she changes,
then changes again; electric rollers
a must as twixt mirror, clothes, eye ranges–
“They just treat you better,” (some shoulders
padded, all lined) “if you dress up a bit.”

The sins she tries to hide: that she was poor
as a child; that she lived on a rick-
ety run-down farm that had no power,
no water–she switches to  yet another
suit, navy better cover for that farm’s house–
And her sister, never quite right (a shudder)
in an age when right (beneath her bright, bowed blouse)
was required–and all her lifetime’s care
of her– smoothed now beneath the just-curled hair.

I swore not to do prompts for a while — just too busy–but here’s a sonnet (of sorts) written for Kerry O’Connor’s challenge on Real Toads to write something based on lines from Shakespeare and also posted to Imperfect Prose (though not prose) where Emily Weirenga writes about how we are held by thepast.   In this case, my title is taken from some favorite lines from King Lear (Act IV, Scene VI):

“Through tattered clothes small vices do appear;
Robes and furred gowns hide all. Plate sin with gold,
And the strong lance of justice hurtless breaks:
Arm it in rags, a pigmy’s straw does pierce it.”