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What, still no kids yet? You think I'm gonna stop nagging you? Dude, I'm an author, I get *paid* to write poems! This ain't over, not by a long shot!

Again I wonder about vowel shifts over the past 400 years - did 'love' and 'prove' rhyme in Shakespeare's day? Or just more slanted rhyme? Stupid English vowel shifting over the centuries...

For shame! deny that thou bear'st love to any,
Who for thy self art so unprovident.
Grant, if thou wilt, thou art belov'd of many,
But that thou none lov'st is most evident;
For thou art so possess'd with murderous hate,
That 'gainst thyself thou stick'st not to conspire,
Seeking that beauteous roof to ruinate
Which to repair should be thy chief desire.
O, change thy thought, that I may change my mind!
Shall hate be fairer lodg'd than gentle love?
Be, as thy presence is, gracious and kind,
Or to thyself at least kind-hearted prove;
Make thee another self, for love of me,
That beauty still may live in thine or thee.

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And you think your mom makes you feel guilty for not having kids yet, be glad Shakespeare wasn't your father!

Is it for fear to wet a widow's eye
That thou consum'st thyself in single life?
Ah! if thou issueless shalt hap to die,
The world will wail thee, like a makeless wife;
The world will be thy widow, and still weep
That thou no form of thee hast left behind,
When every private widow well may keep
By children's eyes her husband's shape in mind.
Look, what an unthrift in the world doth spend
Shifts but his place, for still the world enjoys it;
But beauty's waste hath in the world an end,
And kept unus'd, the user so destroys it.
No love toward others in that bosom sits
That on himself such murderous shame commits.

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Music to hear, why hear'st thou music sadly?
Sweets with sweets war not, joy delights in joy.
Why lov'st thou that which thou receiv'st not gladly,
Or else receiv'st with pleasure thine annoy?
If the true concord of well-tuned sounds,
By unions married, do offend thine ear,
They do but sweetly chide thee, who confounds
In singleness the parts that thou shouldst bear.
Mark how one string, sweet husband to another,
Strikes each in each by mutual ordering,
Resembling sire and child and happy mother,
Who, all in one, one pleasing note do sing;
Whose speechless song, being many, seeming one,
Sings this to thee: 'Thou single wilt prove none.'

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I'm unclear if there was some vowel shift such that 'noon' and 'son' would have rhymed 400+ years ago, or if it was always a slanted rhyme. Hmmm...

Lo! in the orient when the gracious light
Lifts up his burning head, each under eye
Doth homage to his new-appearing sight,
Serving with looks his sacred majesty;
And having climb'd the steep-up heavenly hill,
Resembling strong youth in his middle age,
Yet mortal looks adore his beauty still,
Attending on his golden pilgrimage;
But when from highmost pitch, with weary car,
Like feeble age, he reeleth from the day,
The eyes, fore duteous, now converted are
From his low tract and look another way:
So thou, thyself out-going in thy noon,
Unlook'd on diest, unless thou get a son.

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A continuation of Sonnet 5. Also: make some kids already!! Can I possibly be any more explicit about this!

Then let not winter's ragged hand deface
In thee thy summer, ere thou be distill'd:
Make sweet some phial; treasure thou some place
With beauty's treasure, ere it be self-kill'd.
That use is not forbidden usury
Which happies those that pay the willing loan;
That's for thy self to breed another thee,
Or ten times happier, be it ten for one;
Ten times thy self were happier than thou art,
If ten of thine ten times refigur'd thee:
Then what could death do if thou shouldst depart,
Leaving thee living in posterity?
Be not self-will'd, for thou art much too fair
To be death's conquest and make worms thine heir.

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Those hours, that with gentle work did frame
The lovely gaze where every eye doth dwell,
Will play the tyrants to the very same
And that unfair which fairly doth excel;
For never-resting time leads summer on
To hideous winter, and confounds him there;
Sap check'd with frost, and lusty leaves quite gone,
Beauty o'ersnow'd and bareness everywhere:
Then, were not summer's distillation left,
A liquid prisoner pent in walls of glass,
Beauty's effect with beauty were bereft,
Nor it, nor no remembrance what it was:
But flowers distill'd, though they with winter meet,
Leese but their show; their substance still lives sweet.

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Jeez man, how many sonnets do I have to write about making babies before you go off and do the deed?

Unthrifty loveliness, why dost thou spend
Upon thy self thy beauty's legacy?
Nature's bequest gives nothing, but doth lend,
And being frank she lends to those are free.
Then, beauteous niggard, why dost thou abuse
The bounteous largess given thee to give?
Profitless usurer, why dost thou use
So great a sum of sums, yet canst not live?
For having traffic with thyself alone,
Thou of thyself thy sweet self dost deceive.
Then how, when nature calls thee to be gone,
What acceptable audit canst thou leave?
The unus'd beauty must be tomb'd with thee,
Which, used, lives th' executor to be.

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Hey, have some kids, ya bum!

Look in thy glass, and tell the face thou viewest
Now is the time that face should form another;
Whose fresh repair if now thou not renewest,
Thou dost beguile the world, unbless some mother.
For where is she so fair whose unear'd womb
Disdains the tillage of thy husbandry?
Or who is he so fond will be the tomb,
Of his self-love, to stop posterity?
Thou art thy mother's glass, and she in thee
Calls back the lovely April of her prime;
So thou through windows of thine age shalt see,
Despite of wrinkles, this thy golden time.
But if thou live, remember'd not to be,
Die single, and thine image dies with thee.

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So is Shakespeare a dirty old man, or an advocate for the wholesome family life?

When forty winters shall besiege thy brow,
And dig deep trenches in thy beauty's field,
Thy youth's proud livery, so gaz'd on now,
Will be a tatter'd weed, of small worth held:
Then being ask'd where all thy beauty lies,
Where all the treasure of thy lusty days,
To say, within thine own deep-sunken eyes,
Were an all-eating shame and thriftless praise.
How much more praise deserv'd thy beauty's use,
If thou couldst answer, 'This fair child of mine
Shall sum my count, and make my old excuse,'
Proving his beauty by succession thine!
This were to be new made when thou art old,
And see thy blood warm when thou feel'st it cold.

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My voice is feeling recovered enough to do at least some small works. Billy boy's Sonnets are very much short enough to get back into it. I'm not entirely sure I have the right quality of voice for Shakespeare though, so the first few here are very much experimental. If it is not working well I will find something else to do, but if it does work well I will also do the more substantial of his poems at some point.

From fairest creatures we desire increase,
That thereby beauty's rose might never die,
But as the riper should by time decrease,
His tender heir might bear his memory:
But thou, contracted to thine own bright eyes,
Feed'st thy light's flame with self-substantial fuel,
Making a famine where abundance lies,
Thyself thy foe, to thy sweet self too cruel.
Thou that art now the world's fresh ornament
And only herald to the gaudy spring,
Within thine own bud buriest thy content
And, tender churl, mak'st waste in niggarding.
Pity the world, or else this glutton be,
To eat the world's due, by the grave and thee.

Overdue, but finally here.

Happy Valentine's Day!

I'll get around to a channel update any day now...

Who doesn't like Ike?

Son cœur est un luth suspendu;
Sitôt qu'on le touche il résonne.
-De Béranger.

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The picture used is an illustration from "The Works of Edgar Allan Poe", (1884) by Robert Swain Gifford

Well, I definitely got ennuyé wrong. What a word. Even the pronunciation by google translate sounded God-awful. I'd need to hear it in person from a native French speaker to have any chance at it.

To follow along:

For those who ever played D&D way back in the day (as in, the old Moldvay red Basic book, and the Cook blue Expert book), you will recognize the ending having been used in the module X2, Château d'Amberville, although the male character in the module is named Charles instead of Roderick, while the female retains the name Madeline.

Recorded in 1923 under the Victor label.

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The picture used is Yan Dargent's illustration for Jules Verne's "Edgar Poe et ses œuvres" (1864).

Dun = debt collector; used in this story in the plural, duns - not to be confused with dunce ;-)

Pemmican - you can find an entire series on this food item on a very informative channel I encourage you to subscribe to, if you still have anything to do with youtube:

1 Paris foot = 0.32483943 meters, or 12.79 inches

To follow along:

This is actually the mpq from Diablo 2, but the music should be the same as the original Diablo.

I'll be doing an excessively long recording session today, which should make for another very long Poe short story to be published tomorrow!

What ho! what ho! this fellow is dancing mad!
He hath been bitten by the Tarantula.
-All in the Wrong.

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The picture used is "Eyed click beetle Alaus oculatus, Poolesville, Maryland, USA" by Henryhartley, licensed for reuse under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (

Dat Gullah accent, tho... What can I say, I am a white-boi Yankee by birth and never heard it growing up, so I don't really have any real-life reference point for it, only the phonetics of what Poe wrote into the text.

Swammerdam = Jan Swammerdam, a 17th century Dutch entomologist.

The Avoirdupois system of weights is the one the English-speaking world today is most familiar with, where 1 pound = 16 ounces. (To be contrasted with the less commonly used Troy system, where 1 pound = 12 ounces.)

Golconda is a city in India noted for its proximity to an extremely productive diamond mine that has produced many famous diamonds, not least of which the blue Hope diamond.

The cryptogram in the story, if you care to give it a try for yourself:


‡ = diesis
† = obelus
¶ = pilcrow

Follow along at:

I wasn't paying close attention when I first set about this story and it was a lot longer than I was expecting. A two-hour long recording session. That hurt. Will have to give my throat a rest day after this.

I will definitely do a recording session today, but I am not entirely sure it will be in time to publish it today. So in the mean time, enjoy another video game throw back :)

I still need to rest my voice a bit more before tackling the last couple of Poe's stories. I hope to have another one posted tomorrow.

Michael Wong is Chinese by ancestry, but Malaysian by birth, and is hugely popular in Malaysia. He does a lot of sappy songs like this, and I love them all. If you also like this song, some others to look for: "Our First Time" (第一次), "Your hand in mine" (握你的手), "It's all you" (都是你), "Never apart" (不會分離), "Courage" (勇氣), "Heaven" (天堂), "Right-hand side" (右手邊), "As if nothing happened" (若無其事).

Nil sapientiæ odiosius acumine nimio.

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The third and final installment of the ratiocination series featuring Dupin.

To follow along:

The prior two recordings (Rue Morgue and Marie Roget), having been done back-to-back as they were, and being of such a long duration as they were, my throat hurts a great deal and I may not be able to record again for another day or two. Which means you get some more random filler content until then. Here's Roosevelt going on about Taft and Wilson during the 1912 presidential election campaign. Sounds to me like the more things change, the more they stay the same... And 1912 was before the Federal Reserve System was created!


Es giebt eine Reihe idealischer Begebenheiten, die der Wirklichkeit parallel lauft. Selten fallen sie zusammen. Menschen und zufalle modificiren gewohulich die idealische Begebenheit, so dass sie unvollkommen erscheint, und ihre Folgen gleichfalls unvollkommen sind. So bei der Reformation; statt des Protestantismus kam das Lutherthum hervor.

There are ideal series of events which run parallel with the real ones. They rarely coincide. Men and circumstances generally modify the ideal train of events, so that it seems imperfect, and its consequences are equally imperfect. Thus with the Reformation; instead of Protestantism came Lutheranism.

—Novalis. Moral Ansichten.

The picture used is taken from "Tales of Mystery, Imagination, & Humour: And Poems By Edgar Allan Poe", printed and published by Henry Vizetelly, 1852.

A 'rod' is 16.5 feet, or 5 meters.

To follow along:

My reading pace for this story is a touch hurried in spots, but even with the faster reading pace, this is still a very long story. The recording session for it lasted three hours. If the quality of my voice seems to deteriorate, that is not just your imagination, my voice really suffered. I am not one given much to talking at all, and certainly not for three hours uninterrupted. It was really tough on my voice.

What song the Syrens sang, or what name Achilles assumed when he hid himself among women, although puzzling questions, are not beyond all conjecture.

-Sir Thomas Browne, "Urn-Burial."

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The picture used is "The sailor's face flushed up; he started to his feet and grasped his cudgel" by Byam Shaw for "Selected Tales of Mystery" (London : Sidgwick & Jackson, 1909)

The game of draughts = checkers

Whist is a card game that was the precusor to present-day Bridge.

The French at the very end there: "de nier ce qui est, et d'expliquer ce qui n'est pas."

My reading pace might be a slight bit faster than desirable, but even so it is a very long story.

To follow along:

No Poe short story today, so here's some filler music for you.


Created 1 year, 3 months ago.

232 videos

Category Arts & Literature

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