‘And yes maybe they were meant to be, just not meant to last’
Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy written by William Shakespeare. It's about two young lovers whose deaths lead to the end of familial bad blood. I read this book a year ago and I often find my mind drifting back to it. I've read a lot of Shakespeare's sonnets and they all seem to have similar themes like forbidden love, individual vs society, inevitable fate and more.
William Shakespeare tries to demonstrate through Romeo to not make impulsive decisions out of passionate feelings. In my opinion Romeo was a young kid who was in love with the idea of love. It didn't matter who the person subject to his love was. He was a person who thought by his heart and not his head, which can be seen in every decision of his. When he fell in love, he fell hard. We see that in the case of Rosaline and Juliet. His character portrays the idea of teenage recklessness, immature young love and idealistic hope. He quickly moved on from Rosaline after seeing a girl more beautiful than her, this magnified his immaturity as just like a kid, he quickly changed his mind when he saw a prettier item. He was quite mindless when he decided to marry Juliet the day after he saw her. And we see the consequences of his hastiness when he takes his life for a lover he knew for a few days, only for her to be alive.
Juliet had never experienced the feeling of love before. Her mother never spent time with her daughter, we know this as her mother didn't even know her age. Her father didn't care much either and the only person Juliet knew love from was her wet nurse. So when she felt love from someone else she too got carried away by that feeling without caring about who it was from. Her willingness to go along with all of Romeo's ideas, ignoring the fact that they both are from centuries long feuding families, the fact that Romeo killed her cousin and her deciding to kill herself if she had to get married with someone else proves that she wasn't all that mature either.
However why did both of them go about this the way they did? They both were just teenagers who wanted to feel loved. And since they had never felt that way before they tried in their own foolish ways. There could've been alternate endings, however the original ending is the most realistic and deserved one. They reaped what they sowed. Romeo killed a person after becoming blind by anger without thinking of the consequences. He then thought about taking his life without thinking of what would become of Juliet. In the end however he made a decision which was mature and way over his years. He decided to accompany his wife to the Afterlife. Juliet met a stranger, fell in love and decided to marry him all in the same night. She loved him despite every opposing factor. Her ignorance to Romeo's obvious impulsive decisions and her readiness to indulge in his outrageously uncertain and risky ideas proved her trust and love for him. Her killing herself to be with him in the end was one of the few times she made a decision without being cornered and it definitely took her an inhuman amount of courage to drink that vial of poison. However at least now they'd be together in another place, just as they'd always dreamed of, in peace and happiness.
I personally would recommend this book to anyone over the age of 14. This book communicates strong themes such as death, mentions of suicide and could give the wrong idea of love to younger kids. I think it gives another perspective to a story about two lovers, and that it isn't always a happy ending. It was more realistic judging by the characters' actions and it can serve as a lesson.
It wasn't a love story, it was a story about love