Things are always better in pairs

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"A couplet is a pair of rhymed lines of the same length and METER. This example, from Ben Johnson's short lyric 'Still to Be Neat,' is an IAMBIC TETRAMETER couplet:

Give me a look, give me a face
That makes simplicity a grace."
(Hamilton p.226)

I am a big fan of couplets, especially when they deliver a big bang at the end. Good examples are the sonnets that we have read in class: Shakespeare's Sonnet CXXX - My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun, and Donne's Holy Sonnets - Death, be not proud.

Shakespeare, after realistically viewing the shortcomings his mistress has, he ends his disparaging sonnet with the couplet "And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare/As any she belied with false compare.," and Donne concludes tearing Death a new one with the couplet "One short sleep past, we wake eternally, /And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die." These couplets wrap the whole meaning together and drive the point home, and I love that aspect of them. In my own poetry writing process, I try to do the same; I try to get that dramatic effect at the end that brings the point strongly.

Go back home.

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