In this modern version of Romeo's monologue, compare it to the original version. Here is "WITH ONE LAST KISS" BY D. M. LARSON FROM FREEDRAMA.NET
Your family told me you should married someone else. They told told me that there was a good and safe man who wanted to marry you. I heard one of your brother's say it to me but I thought maybe it was a dream. How could they not want us together? It made me crazy thinking about it. But here I am.. At your Grave... And still so young... Here lies my love... My wife... But somehow your beauty brings light to this tomb. I feel so strange... As if some strange power has come over me...
Is this how someone feels before their death? A strange sort of happiness. Because I know we will be together again.
Death may have taken you but your beauty lives on. Your beauty is more powerful than his black magic. Fight him my love... He wants to take you from me.
Has he fallen in love with you? He can't have you!
I will stay with you. I will not leave your side. Never again.
This is the place where I will rest. Forever by your side. And be rid of this weak flesh that keeps me away from you.
I must have one more look at you before I close my eyes forever. I must hold you one more time. And before my last kiss I must drink to our love. (drinks from a small bottle)
Oh... That's good.
I feel closer to you now. And with one last kiss... I come to you... I'm coming, my love... I'm coming.
Now compare it to the original by William Shakespeare:
In faith, I will. Let me peruse this face. Mercutio's kinsman, noble County Paris! What said my man, when my betossed soul Did not attend him as we rode? I think He told me Paris should have married Juliet: Said he not so? or did I dream it so? Or am I mad, hearing him talk of Juliet, To think it was so? O, give me thy hand, One writ with me in sour misfortune's book! I'll bury thee in a triumphant grave; A grave? O no! a lantern, slaughter'd youth, For here lies Juliet, and her beauty makes This vault a feasting presence full of light. Death, lie thou there, by a dead man interr'd.
How oft when men are at the point of death Have they been merry! which their keepers call A lightning before death: O, how may I Call this a lightning? O my love! my wife! Death, that hath suck'd the honey of thy breath, Hath had no power yet upon thy beauty: Thou art not conquer'd; beauty's ensign yet Is crimson in thy lips and in thy cheeks, And death's pale flag is not advanced there. Tybalt, liest thou there in thy bloody sheet? O, what more favour can I do to thee, Than with that hand that cut thy youth in twain To sunder his that was thine enemy? Forgive me, cousin! Ah, dear Juliet, Why art thou yet so fair? shall I believe That unsubstantial death is amorous, And that the lean abhorred monster keeps Thee here in dark to be his paramour? For fear of that, I still will stay with thee; And never from this palace of dim night Depart again: here, here will I remain With worms that are thy chamber-maids; O, here Will I set up my everlasting rest, And shake the yoke of inauspicious stars From this world-wearied flesh. Eyes, look your last! Arms, take your last embrace! and, lips, O you The doors of breath, seal with a righteous kiss A dateless bargain to engrossing death! Come, bitter conduct, come, unsavoury guide! Thou desperate pilot, now at once run on The dashing rocks thy sea-sick weary bark!
Here's to my love!
O true apothecary!
Thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die.
Questions for students:
Which version did you like better? Why?
What is the character like in the modern version?
Is the character different or the same as the original version?
Select a line from each monologue that mean the same thing but are worded differently.
Does the new version capture the meaning of the original?
How did the modern version help you understand the original version?
Why might an older piece of writing like Shakespeare still be meaningful today?
Feel free to post your answers to these questions below and discuss!
Find more monologues at http://www.freedrama.net/small1.html