Play Sonnet 17
Who will believe my verse in time to come,
If it were filled with your most high deserts?
Though yet heaven knows it is but as a tomb
Which hides your life, and shows not half your parts.
If I could write the beauty of your eyes,
And in fresh numbers number all your graces,
The age to come would say ‘This poet lies;
Such heavenly touches ne’er touched earthly faces.’
So should my papers, yellowed with their age,
Be scorned, like old men of less truth than tongue,
And your true rights be termed a poet’s rage
And stretched metre of an antique song:
But were some child of yours alive that time,
You should live twice, in it, and in my rhyme.
Sonnet 17 is the last of the procreation sonnets, and the poet’s ast thought is to question his own descriptions of the beloved, believing that future generations will believe them to be exaggerations if he does not make a copy of himself (a child)
Billy insists that his comparisons, even though they are strongly worded, are not exaggerations. He even goes as far as to say that his verse is so pale in comparison that it hides half of the youth’s beauty, and they do not do him justice. Without an heir to this great beauty, there will be nothing in the world once the man is gone to prove that Bill was not a liar. The sonnet ends with the notion that should the young man have a child, he shall live both in the child and in the proven veracity of poet’s rhyme.
“deserts” here is that which the young man deserves. Nobody will believe how much you earned all this praise!
“shows not half your parts” is Willy getting critical of how few of the young man’s positive qualities even the most florid language can cover.
New York Public Library, Manhattan
Read up at the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building of the New York Public Library.
“Often referred to as the “main branch,” the Beaux-Arts landmark building on Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street houses outstanding research collections in the humanities and social sciences as well as a circulating children’s collection. The non-circulating graduate-level collections were initially formed from the consolidation of the Astor and Lenox Libraries, and have evolved into one of the world’s preeminent public resources for the study of human thought, action, and experience — from anthropology and archaeology, to religion, sports, world history, and literature.
The Stephen A. Schwarzman Building is renowned for the extraordinary comprehensiveness of its historical collections as well as its commitment to providing free and equal access to its resources and facilities. It houses some 15 million items, among them priceless medieval manuscripts, ancient Japanese scrolls, contemporary novels and poetry, as well as baseball cards, dime novels, and comic books. For over a century, librarians in what are now 15 public service and special collections units have sought out authoritative, popular, and ephemeral materials in the humanities, with an emphasis on literature, art, and history.
These remarkable collections are vast, diverse, and not easily characterized. They range from priceless ancient rarities in the Rare Books and the Manuscripts and Archives divisions to current newspapers from all over the world. More than 1,200 languages and dialects, ancient and modern, are represented in the collections. The uses of the collections are as varied as the items themselves.”
“The origins of this institution date back to the time when New York was emerging as one of the world’s most important cities. By the second half of the 19th century, New York had already surpassed Paris in population and was quickly catching up with London, the world’s most populous city. Fortunately, this burgeoning and somewhat brash metropolis counted among its citizens men who foresaw that if New York was indeed to become one of the world’s great centers of urban culture, it must also have a great library. Prominent among them was one-time governor Samuel J. Tilden, who upon his death bequeathed the bulk of his fortune — about $2.4 million — to “establish and maintain a free library and reading room in the city of New York.”
At the time of Tilden’s death, New York already had two libraries of considerable importance -the Astor and Lenox libraries- but neither could be termed a truly public institution in the sense that Tilden seems to have envisioned. The Astor Library was created through the generosity of John Jacob Astor, a German immigrant who at his death was the wealthiest man in America. In his will he pledged $400,000 for the establishment of a reference library in New York. The Astor Library opened its doors in 1849, in the building that is now the home of The New York Shakespeare Festival’s Joseph Papp Public Theater. Although the books did not circulate and hours were limited, it was a major resource for reference and research.
New York’s other principal library during this time was founded by James Lenox and consisted primarily of his personal collection of rare books (which included the first Gutenberg Bible to come to the New World), manuscripts, and Americana. Located on the site of the present Frick Collection, the Lenox Library was intended primarily for bibliophiles and scholars. While use was free of charge, tickets of admission were required.
By 1892, both the Astor and Lenox libraries were experiencing financial difficulties. The combination of dwindling endowments and expanding collections had compelled their trustees to reconsider their mission. At this juncture, John Bigelow, a New York attorney and Tilden trustee, devised a bold plan whereby the resources of the Astor and Lenox libraries and the Tilden Trust would be combined to form a new entity to be known as The New York Public Library, Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations. Bigelow’s plan, signed and agreed upon on May 23, 1895, was hailed as an unprecedented example of private philanthropy for the public good.
The site chosen for the home of the new Public Library was the Croton Reservoir, a popular strolling place that occupied a two-block section of Fifth Avenue between 40th and 42nd Streets. Dr. John Shaw Billings, one of the most brilliant librarians of his day, was named director.
Billings knew exactly what he wanted. His design, briefly sketched on a scrap of paper, became the early blueprint for the majestic structure that has become the landmark building, known for the lions without and the learning within. Billings’s plan called for an enormous reading room topping seven floors of stacks and the most rapid delivery system in the world to get the Library’s resources as swiftly as possible into the hands of those who requested them.
Following an open competition among scores of the city’s most prominent architects, the relatively unknown firm of Carrère & Hastings was selected to design and construct the new library. The result, regarded as the apogee of Beaux-Arts design, was the largest marble structure ever attempted in the United States. Before construction could begin, however, some 500 workers had to spend two years dismantling the reservoir and preparing the site. The cornerstone was finally laid in place on November 10, 1902.
In the meantime, the Library had established its circulating department after consolidating with The New York Free Circulating Library in February 1901. A month later, steel baron Andrew Carnegie offered $5.2 million to construct a system of branch libraries throughout New York City, provided the City would supply the sites and fund the libraries’ maintenance and operations. Later that year The New York Public Library contracted with the City of New York to operate 39 Carnegie branches in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island. Thus, from the earliest days of The New York Public Library, a tradition of partnership with the city and outreach to the community was established, which continues to this day.
Meanwhile, on Fifth Avenue, work progressed slowly but steadily on the monumental Library which would eventually cost $9 million to complete. During the summer of 1905, the huge columns were put into place and work on the roof was begun. By the end of 1906, the roof was finished and the designers commenced five years of interior work. In 1910, 75 miles of shelves were installed to house the immense collections.
More than one million books were set in place for the official dedication of the Library on May 23, 1911 – 16 years to the day since the historic agreement creating the Astor, Lenox, and Tilden Foundations had been signed. The ceremony was presided over by President William Howard Taft and was attended by Governor John Alden Dix and Mayor William J. Gaynor.
The following morning, New York’s very public Public Library officially opened its doors. The response was overwhelming. Between 30,000 and 50,000 visitors streamed through the building the first day it was open. One of the very first items called for was N. IA. Grot’s Nravstvennye idealy nashego vremeni (Ethical Ideas of Our Time) a study of Friedrich Nietzsche and Leo Tolstoi. The reader filed his slip at 9:08 a.m. and received his book six minutes later! Almost overnight, The New York Public Library became a vital part of the intellectual fabric of American life. Among its earliest beneficiaries were recently arrived immigrants, for whom the Library provided contact with the literature and history of their new country as well as the heritage that these people brought with them.
To help millions of users — from all walks of life and corners of the earth — find materials, the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building maintains extensive catalog and bibliographic resources. Full advantage is being taken of computers and other information technologies to facilitate search and retrieval. In addition — and of equal if not greater importance — the Library maintains a staff of librarians whose expertise, helpfulness, and patience continue to be among the Library’s proudest traditions.”
ACTOR – Carey Van Driest
Carey is originally from the frozen tundra of Wisconsin. In addition to icy climates, she has also lived in the warm Southern hills of Nashville, Tennessee, the cow-town of Fort Worth, Texas and the valley of the Alps of Geneva, Switzerland. She can now technically call herself a New Yorker now after living in the city that never sleeps longer than she’s lived anywhere else. With no actual planning on her part to achieve such a list, she can also say she has traveled to Russia, Greece, Turkey, Germany, France, Scotland, Amsterdam, Italy, Belgium, England, Denmark, Austria, Mexico, Canada, and all over the 50 United States. Next up, she wants to head to the Southern Hemisphere and visit Argentina and the Dominican Republic, followed by Morocco, Australia and Indonesia. She likes talking in third person about where she’s lived and traveled because it makes her feel worldy.
Professionally, she spends most of her time creating characters for TV, Stage and Film. She recently appeared in House of Cards as a reporter dogging Bob Birch and as Maria in Lend Me A Tenor at Cape May Stage. She was a featured actress is the short film, A Family Dinner, which screened at the Short Film Corner at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival and has won several awards in the Film Festival Circuit around the world. She is the voice of a Howler Monkey named Avelina in the upcoming animated feature film Ribbit (2014), starring Sean Astin as Ribbit and Tim Curry as Terence.
Tours: Annie (Grace Farrell). New York: Reckless (Rachel), The Winter’s Tale and The Tempest (Sonnet Repertory Theatre), The Importance of Being Earnest and Arms and the Man. Selected Regional: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Mae) and Much Ado About Nothing at the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, Denver Center Theatre, Alabama Shakespeare Festival and others. Her voiceover work for international documentaries, national commercials and radio can be heard at www.careyvandriest.com. Fluent French Speaker, Animation and Commercial Voiceover Guru, Badass Chick, Shakespeare Afficionado, Carole King Wannabe, Novice Burlesque Dancer and Proud Member of AEA and SAG-AFTRA.
DIRECTOR – Marco Ricci
A graduate of Northwestern University, Marco received the Kodak Gold Award and the Sony Production Award for his thesis film Chicago Minutes.
His short film, Pishadoo, was well received on the festival circuit and was purchased by Canal Plus Europe, Sundance Channel, Atom Films and United Airlines. The film earned production awards at the Santa Barbara Film Festival and the Williamsburg Film Festival.
Marco’s last short film, Hyper, was chosen for the Centerpiece of the New York Film Festival. It was honored as the Best Short Short at the prestigious Aspen Shortsfest and was screened at the San Francisco International Film Festival, the Seattle International Film Festival, and the Edinburgh International Film Festival, among others. Hyper is being distributed by Apollo Cinema and has been seen on Atom Films, RAI Television, and the Independent Film Channel.
His first feature, The Wedding Bros. made it’s world premiere at the SXSW Film Festival. The film, a comedy about two adversarial brothers who set out to make it big with the King Of Long Island Wedding Videos, is being distributed by Universal Prictures/ScreenMedia and has been shown on Cinemax, BBC and RAI.
Marco recently directed a PBS documentary, The Reconstruction of Asa Carter. The film recounts the life story of Native-American writer Forrest Carter, author of The Outlaw Josey Wales, who was in actuality a prominent member of the KKK. It made it’s world premiere at the Sidewalk Film Festival and it’s television premiere in the Spring of 2012.