Follow-Up on Teaching Sonnets | Wanderings in the Labyrinth

Andrew
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.

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Sonnet: Favourites

I set myself this task and then I’m free
To fly abroad to anywhere I choose;
With confidence, assisting in my prime
Companions’ search with nothing I might lose.

They might or mightn’t choose to let me be;
Though never doth their circumstance confuse
My only wish as yearns to take this time,
That this, a burden is, to disabuse.

And clearly, doth my love, to this degree,
Encompass all their lives, and to suffuse
Complex, with all its mystery, this crime
With eager resolution. Know I whose

Bleak life shall see enrichment that ensues?
‘Tis mine, so lifted, by this double muse.

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On the 17th…

…is sonnet IV of the Shakespeare reflected variety.  As usual, it is a reverse Spenserian.  Internal rhymes are all couplets (also as per usual) however this time, I used all of Shakespeare’s rhyming words for these.  I use these in the order in which they appear, excepting that they are rearranged to couplet form.  Mechanically this worked better than expected; however I feel the hairs on the back of my neck standing on end, as no doubt, Lucas is “gunning” for this one.

Sonnet VIII: By Any Other Name

For I, thy gifts supernal might suppose,
Thy daggered figure, cut, as by a blade,
Enough impending, chilling to impose,
Enough avowed, to make the world afraid;

Enough, without the whisper of a roar,
To quail, as judgement sharp would juxtapose;
Enough, when it were seen, enough before,
To pale when it has been, that next arose.

Enough to chill, undaunted though profess,
Might they; When they behold their fear, deplore;
Enough, this fearsome scrutiny to lessen
Say, that judgement least, is judgement more:

This naked cut, no man would dare to dress,
None adorn, none to aid, and none to bless.

This sonnet is part of a short sequence; click here to read it all:

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Sonnet VI: Ten Thousand Treasures

Ere winter’s sweetest place distils to night,
Posterity could speak ten thousand times,
Make not forbidden, those that willing fight;
Deface thy ragged killer for its crimes!

Should one refigure life, if not some loan,
Too much the sum in use: art thou contrite?
Depart with usury and pay to own,
And let thy summer’s beauty be thy right.

Another treasure then if make thine heir,
Not e’er time’s hand made e’er thy leaving known;
And treasure done thyself, or bred, were fair,
All happier of thee than thee outshone.

What vial of Death bewitching dreams prepare?
Self-conquest warms thee, vile Death to dare!

This sonnet is part of a short, or
possibly at some point, very long
sequence; click here to read it all:

Sonnet IV:

Wilt spend thou Nature’s battle unaware
And lend thy loveliness when thou agree
To legacy–or Heaven as thou dare?
This battle, free to lose;  for the degree

That this abuse could bounteous appear;
To use this matchless contest; wouldst thou care
To give thy future someone to revere?
To live, what legacy wouldst thou prepare?

Thyself, as though alone reflected are;
No epigone–when fall thyself so near–
To traffic nature’s callDeceive and scar
This battlement to leave to thy frontier!

In this way, bring thee over from afar,
And what might be thine image, to a star.

This sonnet is part of a short, or
possibly at some point, very long
sequence; click here to read it all:

Sonnet I: Hourglass

As dawn they rise whilst waning moon are we;
How fairest they wherefrom increase our lives;
Incalescence to our recondity,
As one might give, the other so deprives.

Yet in thine eye burns reason’s flame; as fell,
As rivalled, any flame of spring might be;
And seem’st thou wise to all wherewith thou dwell’,
Though reason’s merest bloom to wisdom’s tree.

And through thy tempest, still art thou as fair
In deed, in sight, content to slake and quell
The worst of spring. Thou: tender, unaware,
Dost far more bring than wouldst thou take.  As well,

Thine innocence doth thrive: awake, laid bare;
So true, wilt thou survive the world’s despair.

This sonnet is part of a short, or
possibly at some point, very long
sequence; click here to read it all:

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