Treasure Island

Joe Wocoski


Shakespeare Sonnet Number Fumbles


In these number fumble tomfooleries the vowels of each word have been replaced with numbers. All you need to do is figure out which number equals which vowel, then write out the words between the printed sonnet lines, for example:

Wh8n f6rt7 w0nt8rs sh5ll b8s08g8 th7 br6w
When forty winters shall besiege thy brow

Once you get used to seeing these Number Fumbles, you discover that you can actually read them.


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Sonnet # ____

8s f8st 8s th92 sh8lt w8n1 s9 f8st th92 gr9w1st

3n 9n1 9f th3n1 fr9m th8t wh3ch th92 d1p8rt1st

8nd th8t fr1sh bl99d wh3ch 092ngl0 th92 b1st9w1st

Th92 m80st c8ll th3n1 wh1n th92 fr9m 092th c9nv1rt1st

H1r13n l3v1s w3sd9m b182t0 8nd 3ncr18s1

W3th92t th3s f9ll0 8g1 8nd c9ld d1c80

3f 8ll w1r1 m3nd1d s9 th1 t3m1s sh92ld c18s1

8nd thr11sc9r1 018r w92ld m8k1 th1 w9rld 8w80

L1t th9s1 wh9m n8t2r1 h8th n9t m8d1 f9r st9r1

H8rsh f18t2r1l1ss 8nd r2d1 b8rr1nl0 p1r3sh

L99k wh9m sh1 b1st 1nd9w1d sh1 g8v1 th11 m9r1

Wh3ch b92nt192s g3ft th92 sh92ldst 3n b92nt0 ch1r3sh

Sh1 c8rv1d th11 f9r h1r s18l 8nd m18nt th1r1b0

Th92 sh92ldst pr3nt m9r1 n9t l1t th8t c9p0 d31




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Sonnet # ____

0nthr1ft8 l7v9l1n9ss wh8 d7st th70 sp9nd

0p7n th8 s9lf th8 b960t8s l9g6c8

N6t0r9s b9q09st g1v9s n7th1ng b0t d7th l9nd

6nd b91ng fr6nk sh9 l9nds t7 th7s9 6r9 fr99

Th9n b960t970s n1gg6rd wh8 d7st th70 6b0s9

Th9 b70nt970s l6rg9ss g1v9n th99 t7 g1v9

Pr7f1tl9ss 0s0r9r wh8 d7st th70 0s9

S7 gr96t 6 s0m 7f s0ms 89t c6nst n7t l1v9

F7r h6v1ng tr6ff1c w1th th8 s9lf 6l7n9

Th70 7f th8 s9lf th8 sw99t s9lf d7st d9c91v9

Th9n h7w wh9n n6t0r9 c6lls th99 t7 b9 g7n9

Wh6t 6cc9pt6bl9 60d1t c6nst th70 l96v9

Th8 0n0s9d b960t8 m0st b9 t7mb9d w1th th99

Wh1ch 0s9d l1v9s th 9x9c0t7r t7 b9




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Sonnet # ____

2s 2t f8r f07r t8 w0t 7 w2d8ws 090

Th7t th81 c8ns1m0st th9 s0lf 2n s2ngl0 l2f0

7h 2f th81 2ss10l0ss sh7lt h7p t8 d20

Th0 w8rld wll2 w72l th00 l2k0 7 m7k0l0ss w2f0

Th0 w8rld wll2 b0 th9 w2d8w 7nd stll2 w00p

Th7t th81 n8 f8rm 8f th00 h7st l0ft b0h2nd

Wh0n 0v0r9 pr2v7t0 w2d8w w0ll m79 k00p

B9 ch2ldr0ns 090s h0r h1sb7nds sh7p0 2n m2nd

L88k wh7t 7n 1nthr2ft 2n th0 w8rld d8th sp0nd

Sh2fts b1t h2s pl7c0 f8r stll2 th0 w8rld 0nj89s 2t

B1t b071t9s w7st0 h7th 2n th0 w8rld 7n 0nd

7nd k0pt 1n1s0d th0 1s0r s8 d0str89s 2t

N8 l8v0 t8w7rd 8th0rs 2n th7t b8s8m s2ts

Th7t 8n h2ms0lf s1ch m1rd0r81s sh7m0 c8mm2ts




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Sonnet # ____

Wh8n f6rt7 w0nt8rs sh5ll b8s08g8 th7 br6w

5nd d0g d88p tr8nch8s 0n th7 b859t7s f08ld

Th7 769ths pr69d l0v8r7 s6 g5z8d 6n n6w

Wll0 b8 5 t5tt8r8d w88d 6f sm5ll w6rth h8ld

Th8n b80ng 5sk8d wh8r8 5ll th7 b859t7 l08s

Wh8r8 5ll th8 tr85s9r8 6f th7 l9st7 d57s

T6 s57 w0th0n th0n8 6wn d88p s9nk8n 878s

W8r8 5n 5ll 85t0ng sh5m8 5nd thr0ftl8ss pr50s8

H6w m9ch m6r8 pr50s8 d8s8rv8d th7 b859t7s 9s8

0f th69 c69ldst 5nsw8r Th0s f50r ch0ld 6f m0n8

Sh5ll s9m m7 c69nt 5nd m5k8 m7 6ld 8xc9s8

Pr6v0ng h0s b859t7 b7 s9cc8ss06n th0n8

Th0s w8r8 t6 b8 n8w m5d8 wh8n th69 5rt 6ld

5nd s88 th7 bl66d w5rm wh8n th69 f88l8st 0t c6ld




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Sonnet # ____

2 th3t 129 w0r0 129r s0lf b9t l2v0 129 3r0

N2 l2ng0r 129rs th3n 129 129r s0lf h0r0 l8v0

3g38nst th8s c2m8ng 0nd 129 sh29ld pr0p3r0

3nd 129r sw00t s0mbl3nc0 t2 s2m0 2th0r g8v0

S2 sh29ld th3t b039t1 wh8ch 129 h2ld 8n l03s0

F8nd n2 d0t0rm8n3t82n th0n 129 w0r0

129rs0lf 3g38n 3ft0r 129rs0lfs d0c03s0

Wh0n 129r sw00t 8ss90 129r sw00t f2rm sh29ld b03r

Wh2 l0ts s2 f38r 3 h29s0 f3ll t2 d0c31

Wh8ch h9sb3ndr1 8n h2n29r m8ght 9ph2ld

3g38nst th0 st2rm1 g9sts 2f w8nt0rs d31

3nd b3rr0n r3g0 2f d03ths 0t0rn3l c2ld

2 n2n0 b9t 9nthr8fts D03r m1 l2v0 129 kn2w

129 h3d 3 f3th0r l0t 129r s2n s31 s2


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I hope you have enjoyed these Number Fumbles, please let me know if you or your friends enjoyed figuring them out.

Thank you
Joe Wocoski

Submitted: Saturday, August 03, 2013
Edited: Friday, August 30, 2013

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Poet's Notes about The Poem

I wanted to share these new and exciting sonnet Number Fumble word games I invented, with you, my poetry readers and fans. Please let me know what you think of these new poetry word games which I came up with based on Shakespeare's Sonnets?

I give the Bard full credit for these sonnets, and thank him for giving me the chance to turn his Sonnets into fun word games. I hope to bring a new way of enjoying poetry and word games to all, to rekindle interest in Shakespeare's Sonnets in schools and us all through these fun mind games. So on this site; I am sharing with you these word games from my first poetry puzzle book 'Shakespeare Sonnet Word Games First Foolery' which is available on

please leave a comment I value your feedback.
Thank you very much
May the Bard live On

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