It should be no secret that the first time I fell in love, it would be with a character from a book but the first time I fell in love with a book; it was a more memorable occasion.
I was in High School in America and my English Teacher had told us only a few days prior that we would be reading Macbeth, already one of my favorite plays of Shakespeare’s. I’d read it a few years before in High School in Guyana (it was not class assigned reading, I was doing research for a paper on the literary styles of my fav. author) and I was excited at the prospect of being “taught’ the book.
Anything that could bring me closer, take me deeper…I craved it and so few people my age seemed to appreciate my enthusiasm for Shakespeare.
My English Teacher did an amazing job of making the book come alive and was happy to have at least one student who was eager to discuss the language and nuance of the writing to death.
To help us all get involved, we started reading the book in class out loud. Class was only reading and discussion; all assignments / papers were homework. Only resources to help you understand the language were available in class.
It was amazing. I thought that I had stepped out of the High School of a T.V. show. The class started off hating the idea of reading Shakespeare and ended the term, trying to cast their opinion on what book they would like to be taught next.
The day that we had our final exam based on the books and the lessons in it, after the papers were collected, my English Teacher asked us if we liked the book now.
I couldn’t help but think that “like” was too timid of a word for the emotions that were stirred within me. For me, Macbeth is a perfect play. Written by the only person who could have made it work. It was divine in its flawless display of humanity. It was a mirror.
I still read Macbeth at least once or twice a year, it’s still my absolute favorite Shakespeare play and I can’t say, that I have ever read it and not been impressed or blown away by how revolutionary it was and still is.
Love. It’s the only word I can use to describe how I feel about it because it really has become ingrained in me. It’s a part of me. I can say that my life is different and has been different from the first time I read that and it continues to mold and change me every time I re-read it.
These are all very grandiose things to say about a play but it really is this meaningful to me. There are only a handful of books that I give such an unconditional love and in turn, the authors who have gifted the world with their work.
- But ’tis strange:
And oftentimes, to win us to our harm,
The instruments of darkness tell us truths,
Win us with honest trifles, to betray’s
In deepest consequence.
- Banquo, Scene III