Archives For Poetry

Valanced (adj.)

Valanced means fringed with a beard.  Valanced is cited in William Shakespeare’s play Hamlet (Ham II.ii.422). Hamlet says to one of the players: “Thy face is valanced since I saw thee last.” Felina Silver Robinson

The players arrive, heralded by Polonius, who Hamlet calls a big baby. Hamlet fakes madness for Polonius’s benefit.

#ShakespeareanWordOfTheDay,, @FelinaSilver

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

The Merchant of Venice




Ner. Then is there the County Palatine.

Por. He doth nothing but frown; as who

should say, An if you will not have me, choose:

he hears merry tales and smiles not: I fear he

will prove the weeping philosopher when he

grows old, being so full of unmannerly sadness

in his youth. I had rather be married to a

death’s head with a bone in his mouth than to

either of these. God defend me from these two!

Ner. How say you by the French lord,

Monsieur Le Bon?

Por. God made him, and therefore let him

pass for a man. In truth, I know it is a sin to

be a mocker: but, he! why, he hath a horse

better than than the Neapolitan’s; a better bad

habit of frowning than the Count Palatine: he

is every man and no man: if a throstle sing he

falls straight a-capering; he will fence with his

own shadow: if I should marry him I should

marry twenty husbands. If he would despise

me I would forgive him; for if he love me to

madness I shall never requite him.

Ner. What say you then to Falconbridge,

the young baron of England?

Por. You know I say nothing to him; for he

understands not me, nor I him; he hath neither

Lating, French, nor Italian; and you will come

into the court and swear that I have a poor

pennyworth in the English. He is a proper

man’s picture; but, alas! who can converse

with a dumb show? How oddly he is suited!

I think, he bought his doublet in Italy, his

round hose in France, his bonnet in Germany,

and his behaviour everywhere.

Ner. What think you of the Scottish lord,

his neighbour?

Por. That he hath a neighbourly charity in

him; for he borrowed a box of the ear of the

Englishman, and swore he would pay him again

when he was able: I think the Frenchman be-

came his surety, and sealed under for another.

Ner. How like you the young German, the

Duke of Saxony’s nephew?

Por. Very viley in the morning when he is

sober; and most vilely in the afternoon when

he is drunk; when he is best he is a little worse

than a man; and when he is worst, he is little

better than a beast. An the worst, he is little

better than a beast. An the worst fall that ever

fell, I hope I shall make shift to go without him.

Ner. If he should offer to choose, and choose

the right casket, you should refuse to perform

your father’s will if you should refuse to accept


Por. Therefore, for fear of the worst, I pray

thee set a deep glass of Rhenish wine on the

contrary casket: for, if the devil be within and

that temptation without, I know he will choose

it. I will do anything, Nerissa, ere I will be

married to a sponge.

Ner. You need not fear, lady, the having any

of these lords; they have acquainted me with

their determinations; which is indeed, to return

to their home, and to trouble you with no more

suit.unless you may be won by some other

sort than your father’s imposition, depending

on the caskets.

(On 12/23/14 – Join me for the continuation of “The Merchant of Venice”,



My Poem of the Day




I woke this morning to a chill throughout the house

Not even a mouse would dare to scurry about

My toes curled as my feet touch the floor

Trying to hide from the feel of the cold upon my flesh

Goosebumps completely covering me from head to toe

Oh, cruel, cruel Winter

Why must you inflict me this way

You make me not want to stay

I dream of warmer days

With the sun across my back

As I lay upon the beach floor

And swim deep in the warmth of the ocean’s bed

But at the snap of a finger

Reality hits me and the wrath of your coldness

Remains at my door

My only solace is your delightful beauty

Once the first Winter snow falls

Covering all of our surroundings

Upon the night fall

The moon and the star’s light up the evening sky

There’s nothing more beautiful you could ever see

So I guess it’s worth it to be caught up in your hold

For three whole months before your departure

So my old friend Winter

I guess I’ll take you

Since I don’t seem to get to leave you

Treat me well as I’m caught under your spell

Copyright 2014


Felina Silver Robinson

Unaneled (adj.)

Unaneled means unanointed by a priest, without extreme unction.  Unaneled is cited in William Shakespeare’s play Hamlet (Ham I.v.77). The Ghost says to Hamlet: “Cut off even in the blossoms of my sin, unhouseled, disappointed, unaneled.” Felina Silver Robinson

Essential Question: Did Hamlet really talk to the ghost? And how did the revelations given by the ghost change Hamlet’s reality?

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

The Merchant of Venice



Ant. Thou know’st that all my fortunes are

at sea;

Neither have I money nor commodity

To raise a present sum: therefore go forth;

Try what my credit can in Venice do:

That shall be rack’d, even to the uttermost,

To furnish thee to Belmont, to fair Portia

Go presently inquire, and so will I,

Where money is; and I no question make

To have it of my trust or for my sake.    [Exeunt.




Por. By my troth, Nerissa, my little body is

a-weary of this great world.

Ner. You would be, sweet adam, if your

miseries were in the same abundance as your

good fortunes are: and yet for aught I see, they

are as sic that surfeit with too much as they

that starve with nothing. It is no mean happi-

ness, therefore, to be seated in  the mean: super-

fluity comes sooner by white hairs, but com-

petency lives longer.

Por. Good sentences, and well pronounced.

Ner. They would be better if well followed.

Por. If to do were as easy as to know what

were good to do, chapels had been churches,

and poor men’s cottages princes’ palaces. It is

a good divine that follows his own instructions:

I can easier teach twenty what were good to be

done, than be one of the twenty to follow mine

own teaching. The brain may devise laws for

the blood, but a hot temper leaps over a cold

decree; such a hare is madness, the youth to

skip o’er the meshes of good council, the cripple.

But this reasoning is not in the fashion to choose

me a husband.—O, me, the word choose! I

may neither choose whom I would nor refuse

whom I dislike; so is the will of a living

daughter curbed by the will of a dead father.—

Is it not hard, Nerissa, that I cannot choose

one, nor refuse none?

Ner. Your father was ever virtuous; and

holy men, at their death, have good inspira-

tions; therefore, the lottery that he hath de-

vised in these three chests, of gold, silver and

lead,—whereof who chooses his meaning chooses

you,—will, no doubt, never be chosen by any.

rightly, but one who you shall rightly love.

But what warmth is there in your affection

towards any of these princely suitors that are

already come?

Por. I pray thee, over-name them; and as

thou namest them, I will describe, them; and

according to my description, level at my affec-


Ner. First, there is the Neapolitan prince.

Por. Ay, that’s a colt indeed, for he doth

nothing but talk of his horse; and he makes it

a great appropriation to his own good parts

that he can shoe him himself: I am much afraid

my lady his mother played false with a smith.

(On 12/22/14 – Join me for the continuation of “The Merchant of Venice”,



My Poem of the Day


Christmas: Jesus, Mother Mary & Joseph©

While many slept centuries ago

Mother Mary and Joseph set out on their journey

To find a place to bear their son

They traveled long and far

Until the arrived at the perfect place

Upon their arrival Mary got as comfortable as she could

Waiting patiently for her son to be born

The animals were restless for

They knew someone important was on the way

They too waited patiently as the time grew near

As the midnight hour began to clear

The angels watching over

As baby Jesus begun to appear

The Virgin Mary and Joseph

Stood amazed at the beauty of

The gift of life given to them in the little lord Jesus

Upon the news of his arrival

The lords shepherds guided

Three kings to honor little lord jesus

Who lay safely in his straw filled bed

Bearing gifts they blessed the arrival

Of their newborn King

The angels then began to sing

For peace on earth and the blessing of the newborn king

So each year in honor of his memory

We remember his coming with gifts and prayers for our loved ones

We offer time and food for the needy

We are both thankful and grateful for all that has been given to us

At the sacrifice of the little lord Jesus

Copyright 2014

Christmas: Jesus, Mother Mary & Joseph©

Felina Silver Robinson

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

The Merchant of Venice



If thou wilt lend this money, lend it not

As to thy friends (for when did friendship take

A breed for barren metal of his friend?)

But lend it rather to thine enemy,

Who if he break, thou mayst with better face

Exact the penalty.

Shy.                Why, look you, how you storm!

I would be friends with you, and have your love,

Forget the shames that you have stain’d me


Supply our present wants, and take no doit

Of usance for my moneys, and you’ll not hear me:

This is kind I offer.

Bass. This were kindness.

Shy.                   This kindness will I show.—

God with me to a notary, seal me there

Your single bond; and, in a merry sport,

If you repay me not on such a day,

In such a place, such sum or sums as are

Express’d in the condition, let the forfeit

Be nominated for an equal pound

Of your fair flesh, to be cut off and taken

In what part of your body pleaseth me. [bond,

Ant. Content, in faith: Ill seal to such a

And say there is much kindness i the Jew.

Bass. You shall not seal to such a bond for


I’ll rather dwell in my necessity.               [it;

Ant. Why fear not, man; I will not forfeit

Within these two months—that’s a month be-


This bond expires—I do expect return

Of thrice three times the value of this bond.

Shy. O father Abraham, what these Chris-

tians are,

Whse own had dealings teaches them suspect

The thoughts of others! Pray you, tell me this;

If he should break his day, what should I gain

By the exaction of the forfeiture?

A pound of man’s flesh, taken from a man,

Is not so estimable, profitable neither,

As flesh of muttons, beefs, or goats, I say,

To buy his favour I extend this friendship;

If he will take it, so; if not, adieu;

Ant. Yes, Shylock, I will seal unto this bond.

Shy. Then meet me forthwith at the no-


Give him direction for this merry bond,

And I will go and purse the ducats straight,

See to my house left in the fearful guard

Of an unthrifty knave, and presently

I will be with you.

Ant.                      Hie thee, gentle Jew:


This Hebrew will turn Christian: he grows


Bass. I like not fair terms and a villain’s


Ant. Come on; i this there can be no dis-


My ships come home a month before the day.


(On 12/21/14 – Join me for the continuation of “The Merchant of Venice”,