As You Like Prose and Poetry

We’ve discussed prose and poetry many times before in this project. I don’t know if it’s because this is the first play back after the long break for me or what, but this play, As You Like It, feels different.

Maybe it’s all the songs. Or Orlando’s doggerel. Or the seemingly haphazard shifts between the prose and the verse.

It just feels…


We’re nearly 370 lines (and a scene and a half) into the play before we get a line of poetry. Then, at the end of that scene, we’re back to prose. But then halfway through the next scene (Act one, Scene three), we go back into the poetry again, and it’s another four scenes before we get any prose.

Fits and Starts.

We’ve been told to expect verse in the court, yet neither Orlando or Oliver, nor Rosalind or Celia talks in poetry when we meet them there. We would expect the rural rustics to be all prose, all the time. However, Corin and Silvius are speaking in blank verse when we meet them.

I just can’t get a handle on this…

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