Not Marbles Nor The Gilded Monuments
(Sonnet 55)
-William Shakespeare

Not marble, nor the gilded monuments
Of princes, shall outlive this powerful rhyme;
But you shall shine more bright in these contents
Than unswept stone, besmear’d with sluttish time.

~Here the poet says that neither marbles nor gold plated monuments of the rulers will be able to outlive this sonnet.
~ Here ‘YOU’ stands for the youth. That the young people will be able to outshine the dead in the graves.
~The term’unswept stones’ stand for the uncared monuments.And that all these monuments will lose all its shine and glory with time.
~ Here time is personified as a ‘slut’ and it presented in a negative light. It means that the time besmears all the attempts of the humans to achieve immorality.

When wasteful war shall statues overturn,
And broils root out the work of masonry,
Nor Mars his sword nor war’s quick fire shall burn
The living record of your memory.

~ Shakespeare describes wars as ‘wasteful’ as immorality is out of human’s reach. What they are trying to conquer by fighting wars will someday belong to someone else.
~ Also when the wars struck all the hard work of the masons will be destroyed.
~Even the sword of Mars, who is the god of war, will burn your memory. and this sonnet will even survive the wars. As no war will be able to erase your memory.

‘Gainst death and all-oblivious enmity
Shall you pace forth; your praise shall still find room
Even in the eyes of all posterity
That wear this world out to the ending doom.

~ In this stanza the poet states that against all the deaths and enmity your appreciation for the sonnet will find room.
~ It says that death destroys every thing but this sonnet will keep the subject immortal.
~In the eyes of the readers the sonnet will remain immortal. Here basically Shakespheare wants to say that thtrough my poems I will survive eternally.Which he actually is.
( Well,Shakespheare was an arrogant writer)

So, till the judgment that yourself arise,
You live in this, and dwell in lovers’ eyes.

~ So till the Last day of Judgement arises, i.e. the end of the world,(Sort of dramatic I know) the sonnet will be eternal.
~ And only when the world will end and there is no point in celebrating this sonnet,it will be erased.
~ Here through the term ‘lover’s eyes’ Shakespheare remindes that this is also a love poem, and a reminder of the power of love to transcend mortality.

( Basically it’s a really complicated poem/sonnet.To understand better here is the video lesson )