Ah, Hamlet

by Ken Harnisch

No insanity, this
Parsing of emotions;
This cutting into slices
How I feel and what
I want. It is the province
Of many to hide their
Feelings behind ivy-covered
Walls. To lose themselves
In books by quiet streams.
To contemplate again
The irony of desire
When it collides
With the reality
Of another’s life gone
In directions it did not
Contemplate but could not

Ah, the perfidious Hamlet.
A mind fraught with
Myriad possibilities
And the stunning
Inability to act on
Any impulse lest it
Be thought that
Mind unhinged.

What buttons a man to his
Fears? What prevents
A man from saying
His love out loud
And damning the consequences
Knowing such words may fall
On unhearing ears, or at
Least those not prepared
To listen.

But isn’t that far better
Than not saying the words at all
And them never being heard
So all the pondering and the loss
Is on the silent speaker, and not
At least fruit for his lover’s

Ah, Hamlet: what your
Hand-wringing has wrought
To generations and poets
Since. For sure, it has become
The major theme of at least
One man’s autobiography.

And I write it now.


Posted on 08/31/2011
Copyright © 2023 Ken Harnisch

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Mo Couts on 08/31/11 at 09:08 AM

Shakespeare would be giving you a ton of kudos right now for this lovely gem. Truly.

Posted by Gabriel Ricard on 08/31/11 at 09:42 AM

I'd say you're in good company with this.

Posted by Joan Serratelli on 08/31/11 at 11:12 AM

I agree with Mo- Shakesphere would love it. I know, I did.

Posted by Kristine Briese on 08/31/11 at 11:28 AM

Love it, as always. Your poems always enrich my life. Thank you!

Posted by George Hoerner on 08/31/11 at 03:22 PM

I was fortunate enough to see Hamlet performed at 'The Old Vic' in London during the 50's. I love his dramas and a nice write by you.

Posted by Charlie Morgan on 09/03/11 at 03:42 PM

...very deserving of numero uno!

Posted by Lori Blair on 11/02/11 at 09:37 PM

This is just wonderful and that last stanza..brings me to my knees in adoration!!! Excellent Indeed!

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