Today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day, a holiday dreamed up by John Baur and Mark Summers twenty years ago. Their dream became a reality when the guys got Dave Barry to write a column about a day dedicated to, well, talking like a pirate. You can find the full story of the origins of this glorious excuse for a party on the official TLAPD website (don’t skip the Sing-Along video).
As a tribute to the day, I offer a translation of Shakespeare’s most famous sonnet, Sonnet Eighteen (but who’s counting?). Here’s the original:
Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer’s lease hath all too short a date;
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm’d;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature’s changing course untrimm’d;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade,
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow’st;
Nor shall death brag thou wander’st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow’st:
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.
And now the TLAPD version (by me):
Ahoy, me beauty!
Hot as the Caribbean August past;
The only wench who hasn’t slapped me face.
There’s a tempest shakin’ me by the mast,
And the crew’s got to board by morning’s race
Before the sun melts the black tar we smear’d.
I’ve gold in me pockets, doubloons, real gold,
To make fair me scars, me age, me untrimm’d beard,
Don’ believe me, eh? Go down to me hold.
But you, wench, will always be me beauty,
Even though you work in this shady place,
And ne’er be part of Davy Jones’ booty;
You’ll swim in me heart with a mermaid’s grace.
Here is the token that tells ye it’s true:
Your face depicted in this here tattoo.