Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Sonnets of the Season

Softly you laugh,and vex me with your kiss
Crumbling my quest to resent your bold fire
As I relent to whispers of desire
Stirred by the hints of heaven-tinted bliss
Riding upon the cool wind’s ruddiness
You strut across my firmly planted ire
And never even pause to once inquire
If I should seek a lover such as this
You overthrow my summer-heart’s intent
To disdain your winning works of art
Why is it now, that I cannot resent
The lavishness your fingertips impart?
As you prey on my sighs of discontent
And thus seduce my true-blue summer heart


Methinks the earth reserves its utter-best
To soothe the summer-heart’s acquiescent sigh
For bluer still is autumn’s azure dye
Than summer’s ever-pleasing sapphire crest
Fulfilling expectation’s blind request
Before the moodiness of lowered sky
Steals the stoic gaze of grief's devoted eye
Rendering her quite speechless and impressed
As gently she relinquishes her will
Advancing slowly ‘cross a rustling floor
Caressed with weightless teardrops as they spill
From walnut, maple, birch and countless more
Strange comfort bleeds from autumn’s purple chill
Painting its sorrow on earth’s umber shore


No longer do I seek to quell its glance
Long, heavy lashes spark the two-toned breeze
Rousing the laughter of the scarlet trees
And suddenly this summer-heart must dance
Kiss sorrow from the lips of circumstance
Heaven designs rare moments such as these
Of musty grapes and lumb’ring honey-bees
Mesmerizing grievance in its trance
Fall’s sonnet trickles from the russet vine
Pure tendrils of a reminiscent croon
As love and loss and longing intertwine
The scent of dusk scatters the afternoon
How full the draught of summer’s darker wine
Earth’s pining slumbers ‘neath the harvest moon

Janet Martin

At our local thrift store I picked up a book entitled
Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Sonnets from the Portuguese and other Poems

I was intrigued by this rhyming pattern…a-bb-aa-bb-a-c-d-c-d-cd

I. The Italian (or Petrarchan) Sonnet:

The basic meter of all sonnets in English is iambic pentameter (basic information on iambic pentameter), although there have been a few tetrameter and even hexameter sonnets, as well.

The Italian sonnet is divided into two sections by two different groups of rhyming sounds. The first 8 lines is called the octave and rhymes:

a b b a a b b a

The remaining 6 lines is called the sestet and can have either two or three rhyming sounds, arranged in a variety of ways:

c d c d c d
c d d c d c
c d e c d e
c d e c e d
c d c e d c

from Basic Sonnet Forms- by Nelson Miller


  1. Three times I'm stricken deep. Three sonnets I would keep, and with a link to Browning’s best, a thrill ensues, I cannot rest.

    Three times fabulous, Janet. Elizabeth Barrett Browning is a favorite writer and my favorite all-time poem is http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/sonnet-xliii-how-do-i-love-thee/

    I prefer to write Shakespearian sonnets (something about the rhyme scheme) but I love reading the Italian sonnets.

  2. Mike, as always, you are far too kind, but I have to say THIS, after it was written, gave me a feeling of complete. Have you ever written a poem that left you with an unfinished feeling? I have. There is nothing that eats at me quite like leaving a task or poem unfinished and there is nothing that feels quite like that feeling of 'finished', when you have reached a goal, confident that you gave it your very best effort!

  3. p.s. Mike. How Do I Love Thee is also a favorite of mine. One of the greatest love poems ever written!


Thank you for your visit to this porch. Any thoughts you would like to share?