Sonnet 18, sung by David Gilmour

Want a soothing moment in your busy day? Listen to guitarist and lead singer with Pink Floyd, David Gilmour, sing Sonnet 18 and you may be intrigued by his rendition. 

The sonnet was set to music which was written by the composer and conductor, Michael Kamen, and it was part of a 2002 benefit album for the Royal Academy for the Dramatic Arts in London titled When Love Speaks. About that same time Gilmour recorded himself singing the song, and the recording was released as an extra on the 2002 DVD David Gilmour in Concert. I found several links to his recording online;  one was at the Open Culture site which had information about how the recording came about. It also included the following comment about the sonnet: “It was written in about 1595, and most scholars now agree the poem is addressed to a man.” As a fan of Mary Sidney, I imagine that she wrote this sonnet to her brother, Sir Philip Sidney (who was killed young, in battle), saying that as long as this poem is read aloud or silently, it will give life to him—immortal poetry indeed!

(This YouTube link of the recording may work. The Open Culture site link is unreliable.) If this link doesn't take you to Mr Gilmour on his boat on the Thames, browse around; it is worth finding a way to hear his rendition of this sonnet.

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.