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The Sonnet in the Twentieth Century

I was intrigued by the fact that over the years the general format for a sonnet has remained the same. Ususally you see either an evolution or a de-evolution in the structure of such literary forms to the point where they become more complex or too simple. A small shift in the sonnet format came in the implementation of closed verse rather than open. The Edna St. Vincent Millay sonnet "XV" followed a very unique rhyme scheme: ABBAABBACDCDEF.

It varied slightly through out and embraced modern themes (jazz, cigarettes) It otherwise follows the italian standard sonent. I never knew that nearly 1/4 of E.E Cummings's work was poetry. The lines of these sonnets run together and make it seem crammed. There is also a lot of alieration. 'selves sing sweetly' which at times can be overwhelming. Apparently this is done to make the line seem new and refreshed like spring. Today in class we talked a little bit about the meter and rhythm of a sonnet and I am still a bit weary about writing my own in the coming weeks.

The trochee was a word that I had heard before but I definately didn't remember it when Jerz was lecturing. The thing about sonnets is that they can be about anything, not just lovey dovey stuff. They can be about love, loss, death, life and even the seasons. A sonnet defined: A 14-line verse form usually having one of several conventional rhyme schemes.

Tips: How to write a sonnet?
The Sonnet in the Twentieth Century by Anthony Robinson.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on February 15, 2005 8:39 PM.

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