Type: Literary Analysis
Pages: 2 | Words: 362
Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Shakespeare’s and Moss’ version of “Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer’s Day?” have some similarities and differences. The main similarities are in terms of the title and the content. The title is in a form of a simile which compares the poet’s friend to a summer’s day. Both poems describe the beauty of the poet’s friend.

The poems however differ in terms of the language used. Whereas Moss uses simple language, Shakespeare employs more complex language. For instance, Shakespeare uses words such as ‘thee’, ‘thou’ and ‘art’ instead of simpler forms such as ‘you’ and ‘are’. This might be due to time difference at which the two poems were written.

Another difference seen in the two poems is use of imagery. Shakespeare used figure of speech throughout his sonnet, a feature that is not seen in Moss’ poem. An example of imagery in Shakespeare’s sonnet is seen in third line when he talks of ‘Rough winds’ to refer to strong winds. Unlike Shakespeare, Moss’s poem lacks imagery. The use of imagery in Shakespeare’s poem makes it more complex to understand. On the other hand, Moss clearly brings out the meaning of his poem by avoiding the use of imagery.

Unlike Moss, Shakespeare uses rhyme pattern in his sonnet. For instance, the last words of the sonnet in each line have a rhyme pattern of a-b-a-b. For example, line one and line three words ‘day’ and ‘may’, and line two and four words ‘temperate’ and ‘date’ rhyme. The sound patterns created by these words add beauty to Shakespeare’s sonnet. However, this beauty is lost in Moss’s poem which lacks rhyme pattern. Although Moss’s poem lacks rhyme pattern, sound devices are evident in his poem. For example, line five and six words ‘hot’ and ‘not’ have similar sound.

Thus, the two poems are similar in terms of content and title, but differ in use of imagery, language and rhyme pattern. Shakespeare’s use of rhyme pattern and imagery complicates the meaning of his poem but adds beauty to it.  Moss does not use imagery and instead he uses plain language to simplify the meaning of his poem, but in the process losses the beauty seen in Shakespeare’s sonnet.

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