Shakespeare's Imagery

887 Words4 Pages
As Helena, a character in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, describes “Love looks not with the eyes but with the mind. And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind. Nor hath Love’s mind of any judgment taste—Wings and no eyes figure unheedy haste.” Love is, by nature, without reason or thought. It blows past all sense of reason or what is best for its inhabitant. No matter how powerful or important you are, you can always be controlled by love. Through mirroring the mortal and the supernatural worlds, Shakespeare illustrates that “the course of true love never did run smooth.”
The trouble with love kindles early on. On the mortal side, Helena is desperately in love with Demetrius. Unfortunately, even from the beginning, the love is deeply unrequited. As Demetrius says in plain terms, “I do not, nor I cannot, love you” (2.1.186). Meanwhile, Hermia and Lysander are in love, but, unfortunately, this love is completely forbidden as Hermia is betrothed to Demetrius. Hermia and Lysanders love is so strong that they decide to run away, and hoping to comfort Helena, tells her of their plans. She tells their plans to Demetrius, hoping to earn his favor. As a crazed chase begins, we can be certain that the course of all of their loves are not ‘smooth.’
And even as we see this tragic love on a mundane level, we see the same tragic love occurring on a supernatural level. The Godlike king and queen of fairies are experiencing issues of their own. As Puck explains “For Oberon is passing fell and wrath Because that she (Titania), as her attendant hath A lovely boy stolen from an Indian king” (2.1.6-9). Love and jealousy have twisted their minds to such an extent that they jump to an argument and refuse to speak to each other (knowing full well that the ...

... middle of paper ...

...ending was a happy one, we can be sure that the course of both the supernaturals and mortals love-lives were definitely not smooth.
By making use of both the Mortal and Supernatural world, Shakespeare conveys that “the course of true love never did run smooth.” The trouble with love begins early on, both on the mortal and supernatural sides, as the mortals experience both unrequited and forbidden love and the supernaturals experience jealousy. The middle of the play further shows the bumpy side of true love by turning the love triangle for the mortals and the supernaturals. In the denouement of the play, the spontaneity of love is further shown when everything is reverted to normal (except Demetrius old love of Hermia) and all the couples are happy. As Shakespeare has taught us and we must all remember, “the course of true love never did run smooth.”

Xander Davies
Open Document