November 21: No Problem

No Shakespeare text is wholly problem free,
For even Hamlet must be saved at sea
By too-convenient pirates at their pleasure-
A text is not a play by any measure.

A play’s comprised of choices beyond number
To smooth the moments that the words encumber,
Defining character, gestures explaining
In ways both truthful and yet entertaining.

And when the concept unifies instead
Of highlighting the broken story thread,
We understand how Pericles can be
A trial to read and yet a joy to see.

For thoughtful, clever work thus on display
belies the concept of a problem play.

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