My words fly up, my thoughts remain below
"My words fly up, my thoughts remain below: Words without thoughts
never to heaven go."
In this pivotal scene the King has directed Rosencrantz and
Guildenstern to accompany Hamlet to England, thus effectively
banishing this troublesome young man. Polonius enters and tells the
King that he will conceal himself and spy on the conversation
between Hamlet and his mother; and the King then kneels and prays
not so much for forgiveness for his "rank" offence in killing his
brother, but rather that he will get away with it. Hamlet enters,
unseen by the King, and considers killing the King at prayer. He
does not, however, fearing that the King will then go to heaven.
The King rises from prayer, never having seen Hamlet, and utters
the words above, revealing his own knowledge that his prayer is
invalid, and consists of words but no true feelings of remorse.