Wherefore Romeo? – A Broken Sonnet


Robe Turquoise

Dialogue Poem Set 3.3: On Love

Robe Turquoise replied:


Wherefore Romeo? – A Broken Sonnet


Pray tell me, prithee, art thou a pagan?

Talk of ‘Titans’ and claiming vacancy

To sky and scen’ry, idolising the one

Thou profess to love, yet thee – know her not.

Perforce, therein is vacancy. A ‘fling’.

No more!

Think on that fool, Rom’o, who died ‘loving’

Juliet, star-crossed love? Love? – Never more.


He Ros’line love-wail’d but two tears before.

This’s love’s fraud. How we, Big Brother’s fiend, tongue-

forked, now fawn feelings in rehearsed lines, sure

For show, soundbite in-glory, succumb

To ego-pride-temptress, shallow impress –

Contract deals for ‘old consumer’s’1 ideals:



By Arif uz Zaman

January 2013

For the REPLY to this poem, please read Layla.

For the PROBLEMATIC poem to which this is the reply, please click Nightlighter.

To understand what are ‘the Dialogue Poems’, please click here.


1 A medieval reference to ‘the Devil’.



Filed under Arif uz Zaman: Dialogue Poem, Arif uz Zaman: Poetry, Poetry

4 responses to “Wherefore Romeo? – A Broken Sonnet

  1. Well done! This sounded very Shakespearean to me : ) I love Shakespeare but Romeo and Juliet is not a favorite of mine, which I know sounds strange.

    I’ve been reading over this great poem several times, trying to understand its depth and complexity. My interpretation of the first stanza is that it’s shame on Romeo for loving another human being like an idol.

    The second stanza is a take on modern love and in a way even society, that has become very superficial.

    This is my take on the poem, which I enjoyed reading very much. I could probably read it several more times and come up with other meanings in the poem, too, maybe entirely different from your intentions or purpose behind the poem, but that’s what makes poetry amazing. It’s absolutely so subjective. As one person described it a poem is like an onion with many layers.


  2. Again great feedback – and you are a very perceptive reader, alhamdulillah. It is true I wanted the first stanza to begin from Shakespeare’s iconic play on ‘love’ (and I do love Shakespeare) but also to begin from the Nightlight poem too. Then to launch, as you say, onto a wider comment about the ‘Industries’ (and the societies that increasingly host them) that exploit the construction of a manufactured (and to me, an inauthentic, though seemingly popular) ‘love’ – that (I believe) isn’t.

    I agree with you too on how poetry can be layered like an onion with meaning after meaning. But so hard to do 😦


  3. I’m happy that I understood what you meant to say in this poem. Often I interpret poems in ways that are distinctly different from what the writer intended.

    Yes, writing is very hard work, especially poetry. Being a writer is creating something out of nothing, and a lot of it requires material from the inner self. Keep at it though as you are doing a great job! I’m very happy to have found your writing and blog : )


  4. Kind words, Maryam. Jzk. Thank you for them. 🙂


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