All the world's a stage

By Adam Powell,2014-12-12 18:33
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All the world's a stage

William Shakespeare ;

All the world's a stage,

    And all the men and women merely players:

    They have their exits and their entrances;

    And one man in his time plays many parts,

    His acts being seven ages. At first the infant,

    Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.

    And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel

    And shining morning face, creeping like snail

    Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,

    Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad

    Made to his mistress' eyebrow. Then a soldier,

    Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,

    Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,

Seeking the bubble reputation

    Even in the cannon's mouth. And then the justice,

    In fair round belly with good capon lined,

    With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,

    Full of wise saws and modern instances;

    And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts

    Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon,

    With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,

    His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide

    For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,

    Turning again toward childish treble, pipes

    And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,

That ends this strange eventful history,

Is second childishness and mere oblivion,

    Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.


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