In “Sonnet 116” written by William Shakespeare, the poet describes thoughts of love and how it affects a person. The idea of love is clearly conveyed throughout the poem. Through the structure, figurative language, and rhyme scheme of the poem, the poet is able to establish his opinion on love and how he feels about it. The structure of the poem is that of a Shakespearean sonnet. It contains three quatrains and one couplet. The structure of the poem is what makes it unique.
The three quatrains establish the speaker’s idea of love and give a brief description of it. “Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds”. This line describes love as an emotion that does not easily change. The couplet at the end of the poem serves another purpose, as it is used as a conclusion to how the speaker feels about love. The figurative language used throughout the poem describes love. “It is the star to every wandering bark”.
This metaphor describes love as a star that every boat follows, meaning that love is an emotion that every man follows as well. The speaker also describes love as never ending feeling. “Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, but bears it out even to the edge of doom”. This line depicts love as an emotion that does not change through the passing of time, but stays the same until the end of it. The rhyme scheme of the poem is one of a typical Shakespearean poem, which is ABAB CDCD EFEF GG.
This particular rhyme scheme gives the poem a certain flow and rhythm, since it also contains a few pauses. The most important feature of the rhyme scheme is the couplet because it is the conclusion of the poem. “If this be error and upon me proved, I never writ, nor no man ever loved”. The couplet demonstrates the poets final thoughts, as he concludes by saying that if what he said is untrue than he never wrote anything and that no man has ever loved. These final thoughts set more of a challenging statement.
The theme of the poem is that love lasts forever and does not change; if it does change it is not love. Through the figurative language, structure and rhyme scheme of the sonnet, Shakespeare is able to give a meaning of love and express his opinions about it. Because of this, the sonnet is not just a simple poem, but it also has a deeper meaning as seen in “Sonnet 116”. British American School 5th Semester AP English Miss Gay Major Assignment #1 Carlo Eduardo Alberto 5th Semester B 11/October/2012