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Saturday, December 4, 2010

Some Say

(O Presépio or Nativity Scene by
Ivan Borges, Brazilian woodcut artist)

It is midnight in Elsinore. The guards are keeping watch on a platform before the Castle.

For the third time now, the ghost of Hamlet’s father, the late King of Denmark, has appeared to the guards. The men try to confront it, to question it, but it disappears.

It faded just when the rooster crowed, says Marcello, one of the officers, and it may be some time before the ghost appears again.

Some say that ever ’gainst that season comes
Wherein our Savior’s birth is celebrated,
The bird of dawning singeth all night long;
And then, they say, no spirit dare stir abroad;
The nights are wholesome; then no plants strike,
No fairy takes, nor witch hath power to charm,
So hallow’d and so gracious is the time.

~ William Shakespeare (1564-1616), from Hamlet, I, i

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