Anne’s Lament (A Letter from Anne Hathaway to William Shakespeare)

Sara Kumar

 

Dear husband, it is I, your simple maid

I trust the city sun shines bright for you

The village chorus here whispers your name

They who once cleaned the chapel of its art

Now place above the font your common frame

O tender, loving, sweet son of Stratford

 

Pardon these unseemly verses I weave

I fathom but you know I cannot read

And so clasp the man’s hand who writes for me

Listening for tidings I loathe to give

Our son Hamnet is no longer living

 

You who with ink give birth to kings and knaves

Must know the worth of a mother’s embrace

And when your invention exits the stage

You breathe a new creature upon the page

Fashion me then a shelter, some sound shade

 

I hear the child clamor and speak your name

Like a ghostly star, falling west too soon

Come home father, scoop up your thankful brood!

A stanchion holds your head in London’s grip

To serve your rude wit on a fine platter

 

There are no possible words you can write

That will dull the edge of memory’s knife

Grief fills the room of our absent child

Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me

Puts on his soft luster, repeats his words

 

Receive his last words, play them with your pen

Such harmony you will not hear again

He left the world smiling, singing a hymn

Let me join the angels, O Lord, let me in

 

 


Sara Kumar has worked as a control systems engineer, a high school chemistry teacher, and is currently serving as the secretary at a Catholic church.  She has a BS in electrical engineering from Rice University and an MA in Faith and Culture from the University of St. Thomas.  In her spare time, Sara enjoys participating in community theatre and spending time with her nieces and nephew.