Now is the school year full of discontent

My sophomore year has been interesting to say the least. Much like everyone else trudging through the halls, this year has been quite a roller coaster for me. To escape the monotony, stress and everyday bleh of high school, most of us have our happy places. These places vary greatly between people. I just happen to find mine in music. . . and classic literature.

In a world of honors classes, rare is the occasion I find pure joy in what I am learning. For the first time in a long while, English offered me the true joy of education. We started reading Richard III by William Shakespeare, and I could hardly contain my excitement.

After ordering my own copy, anxiously awaiting its arrival, reading and rereading the play all over the course of three days, I attended my seventh period English class practically jumping out of my seat, just waiting to begin. It took an agonizing three days worth of introduction, but we finally started reading and annotating Shakespeare’s work of brilliance.

“Now is the winter of our discontent, Made glorious by this son of York.” More like, “Now is the school year full of discontent, Made glorious by the work of Shakespeare.” Allow me to indulge my inner nerd for one moment.

I accept my nerd label and wear it proudly.”

— Aryauna Thompson, 10

The opening soliloquy of Richard III is full of metaphors, extended metaphors, foreshadowing, diction, emotion – the list goes on. What I’m trying to say is the opening bit of this play is enough to tug at my heart.

We spent two days annotating and really digging into Richard’s inner monologue. As we annotated, I found myself having conversations about the meaning behind every small detail in his speech. This is extremely unusual for me. Most of the time I sit at the back of the classroom, just hoping not to have to speak in front of everyone.

But this time I could not contain my excitement. . . Even though I was the only one. This realization I was alone in my love for his work was shocking to me. How can people NOT like Shakespeare? I was baffled, but it became a learning experience.

I found out while Shakespeare may be my favorite, I am in the minority because I am one of those who actually enjoy his genius. While this was disappointing, I refused to let it get in the way of my excitement. I am a dedicated fan of the Bard and that will not change, despite the laughs and eye rolls I am given by my peers. I accept my nerd label and wear it proudly because in the words of William Shakespeare, “To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man.”