Follow-Up on Teaching Sonnets | Wanderings in the Labyrinth

Aug 22, 2013 @ 10:15:42

One thing at a time. :-)

It’s been my experience that students can count syllables, and get 10 syllables into a line, far easier than they can match the iambic pentameter. The iambic pentameter only came for me after about thirty sonnets — so I think it’s less of a priority. We want students to get over three hurdles first: writing fourteen lines, writing a rhyme scheme, and writing ten syllables in a line. The iamb can come later, because it’s a “sounds like this” issue, which gets solved by kids who care about writing more than one or two.

I could have sworn that it was Dershowitz, but it’s now been at least a decade since I read the report, and the name of the lawyer has long since escaped me. It was about the time of the O.J. Simpson trial, as I recall, or before, so it may not be on the Web — given that it was 1994. It was a profile of a prominent lawyer of the era, might have been Harper’s magazine or The Atlantic…

As for your sonnet sequence, I like it. It conveys feelings of doubt and uncertainty, and solitude; but it’s very much rooted in internal feeling and abstract language, rather than in the macrocosmic world of objects and things and processes. I tend to lean more into the world of objects than you, but it may be an advantage in the poetry world these days.

via Follow-Up on Teaching Sonnets | Wanderings in the Labyrinth.


Both the haiku intro and the sonnet…

Can be played to a tattoo march in 4/4 time.  Prum pum pum pum pum…..   Prum pum pum pum pum…..  Prum pum pum pum pum…..  More analysis and permutations to follow in a few hours…okay well, it’s been a day. (not in a coma, but close)

I couldn’t quite keep the sonnet or haiku formatting without making the rhythmic presentation confusing, therefore I have just inserted both entries into a table.

First the sonnet:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 an -swer  ev(e) -ry  call,  Though  I
 know  I  Might  die  quick -ly;  yet
 I  will  an -swer  still.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 know -ing  I  could  fall,  and  al-
-though  I  Might  be  sick -ly;  yet
 an -swer  them  I  will.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Ev -en
 if  I  am  a  -lone,  I’ll
 an -swer  With  con -vic -tion;  Nor
 e -ven  hes -i -tate.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
‘Til  our
 ty -rants’  o -ver -thrown,  no
 plans  or  Der -e -lic -tion,  will
 keep  me  from  their  gate.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 If  we  are  in  chains,  and  none  are
 free,  for  Life  is  emp -ty,  I’ll
 e  -ven  fight  my  kin.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Doubt -less, ’til  re  mains, -up -on  the
 sea  or  Land,  of  them,  we  have
 scat -tered  to  the  wind.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Free,  is  this,  my  land;
 joined,  but  not  by  chains;
‘Til  no  man  can  stand;
‘Til  no  man  re -mains.

Perhaps the final couplet could be used as a cadence/chorus.

And here is the haiku in similar format:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 This  is  what  was  true,  in  that
 mo -ment  when  I  knew:
 I  knew  I  would  go;
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Hear  the  call  and  know  that  my
 du -ty  would  lie  here
 If  the  call  were  near.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Mine  or  for  my  own,  If  I
 had  to  act  a -lone,
 whe -ther  I  was  sick,
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 If  my  death  were  quick,  I  would
 not  ac  -cept  a  cage.
 Nev  -er  mind  my  age.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 I  could  not  for  -give,  for  I
 know  I  can  not  live
 with  my  life  in  doubt.
Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 En -e -mies  with -out,  kill  them;
 e -ven  if  our  kin,
 en -e -mies  with -in.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Free  this  land  shall  be  From  the
 sea  to  shi -ning  sea.
 We  shall  car -ry  on.
 Prum  pum  pum  pum  Pumm  …  …  …
 Free -dom,  ne  -ver  free,  It  is
 your,  and  my,  dec  -ree
‘Til  we’re  dead  and  gone.

This project brings to light another relationship between sonnets and haiku.  Two haiku can be plucked out of each couplet of a sonnet, and/or two haiku can stand in for each couplet of a sonnet padded by syllables on either side.  A couplet is 20 syllables and a haiku is 17.  It would be an interesting project to compose a sonnet. out of seven haiku, using that idea, and compose a sequence of 7 haiku from a sonnet.

Perhaps there will be a couple of sonnets and a haiku in the days to come using that method.  It sounds Like it would be fun.

I’ve recently thought that one could write a sonnet in blank verse (non-rhyming iambic pentameter) and then arrange the rhymes afterward.  That, too, would be an interesting project.  I think I’m going to do both of these, or rather, all three of these, in the near future.