A reading of a Shakespeare sonnet
William Shakespeare’s Sonnet 11, beginning ‘As fast as thou shalt wane, so fast thou grow’st’, is another ‘Procreation Sonnet’, in which the Bard urges the Fair Youth to marry and have children. Below, we sketch out a brief analysis of Sonnet 11 in terms of its overall meaning, its language, and its themes.
As fast as thou shalt wane, so fast thou grow’st
In one of thine, from that which thou departest;
And that fresh blood which youngly thou bestow’st,
Thou mayst call thine when thou from youth convertest.
Herein lives wisdom, beauty, and increase;
Without this folly, age, and cold decay:
If all were minded so, the times should cease
And threescore year would make the world away.