Friday, January 8, 2010

Confined* by Words

Above, I have copied an excerpt from an early, gorgeous piece of propaganda, the St. Crispian's Day speech from Shakespeare's Henry the Fifth, more easily read below:

...He that hath no stomach for this fight,
Let him depart; his passport shall be made,
And crowns for convoy put into his purse.
We would not die in that man's company...

Of course, nobody does depart, any more than they do in modern-day war films. Words can free or confine a listener. These make a virtue of death. I got so obsessed with this speech, and so taken over by this little tin soldier (leather jerkin, tiny shield), that I have also posted as a photos on TinyTheatre and redbubble, and of course I did a t-shirt. I'll be continuing a Shakespeare series with the lead soldiers on TinyTheatre, too many ideas + Zeiss lens on my little digital camera. Posting later in the day tomorrow, I feel like Mr. Toad after the run-in with the motor-car.

*The Illustration Friday prompt is "confined".

17 comments:

Rondell said...

Who Henry Five? That your husband or something?

ArtSparker said...

Okay, I'm totally busted for laziness. I will go edit.

Critics( Just kidding)!

tony said...

When The Going Gets Tough......?

Titus said...

Manuscript heaven.

Isabel said...

mmm...I have read this long ago, but your post is making me go back to the speech and read it carefully.

Thank you and Happy new Year my friend!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Some people have no stomach for the fight,I ,on the other hand, have rather too much stomach for the fight.

I blame the mince pies.

ArtSparker said...

TFE- I know you would never mince the words.

Clowncar said...

ooh, tiny Shakespeare! do you take requests?

because bottom and the mechanicals would be Big Fun!

lettuce said...

yes, its some speech

i do like the regularity and repetition in this along with its disruptions

and my friends v. much like your calendars which i gave them for xmas.

Coreopsis said...

Beautiful piece--great textures in the repeated soldier and the calligraphy of the words. I haven't read the play since I was 18, and while the speech sounds really noble, I think it's a nobility that I myself would pass on (and would hope my children would pass on).

Celeste Bergin said...

They are beautifully crafted words --who could possibly slink away with their crowns for convoy after hearing them? Your visual interpretation is right on the money...All soldiers seem willingly confined.

Mary Jane said...

A great image, a thoughtful moment of reading over your thoughts and insight.
Thank you for an interesting moment in my day today.

aleph said...

This is the kind of posts I love, I read it more than once, the illus. works perfectly! I liked the t-shirt a lot too.

tanaudel said...

Oh gosh, I love tin soldiers!

And that speech is such a wonderfully powerful example of the genre - I don't know if much comes close (although I always liked the exchange from Zulu: "Can you walk, soldier?" "Do you want me to dance?" "I want you to crawl!").

Susan Faye said...

I love that this image is reminiscent of a border in an illuminated manuscript--very striking!

justdoodleit said...

Nice! The splattered ink version on the T-shirt is quite dramatic.

Caroline said...

I love it! By far the most creative take on confined I've seen!!