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Tears of a Goddess (A Sonnet)
He plunged her love into the crashing waves,
And from this spray a fiery light was born.
One spark of pride brightens the darkest caves,
A fearless heart within the woman scorned.
The tender lips he kissed wrinkled with spite,
Still moist with dreams and promises not kept.
Her crimson mood endured throughout the night,
But when the time was right, she wept and wept.
And with an amber sun came his excuse,
Yet she was not enchanted by his lies.
Instead, refused the dealer of abuse.
He cursed the gleam of freedom in her eyes.
With each goodbye, a valued lesson learned.
For love is never true unless 'tis earned.
How to Write a Shakespearean Sonnet
The sonnet is a 14-line poetic format that contains a specific rhyme scheme and meter pattern. While there are many different versions (i.e., Petrarchan, Spenserian), my personal favorite is the English sonnet made famous by the beloved playwright, Shakespeare. In order to be deemed a "Shakespearean sonnet", a poem must follow three verse rules:
1) It must be written in "iambic pentameter" (a verse pattern using 5 pairs of unstressed & stressed syllables to create a ten-syllable line):
da-DUM da-DUM da-DUM da-DUM da-DUM
2) It must contain four stanzas (three quatrains & a couplet). A stanza is a poem's paragraph, and a four-lined stanza is called a "quatrain". The two lines that rhyme at the end are called a "couplet".
3) It must follow a rhyme scheme of
a-b-a-b, c-d-c-d, e-f-e-f, gg
A "rhyme scheme" details the end-sounds of each line, therefore, the letters in a rhyme scheme pattern represent these last words/sounds. For example, in the poem shown, "waves", "born", "caves", and "scorned" are labeled "a-b-a-b".
4) The last two lines, or "couplet", must address the overall moral or main idea of the poem. Because a sonnet's couplet is the culminating piece of the poem, it must leave the reader with a memorable rhyme about the poem's ultimate purpose.
Although writing a Shakespearean sonnet can be quite challenging, accomplishing the feat is both rewarding and addicting!!! Here are some helpful links to help you on your poetic journey:
- Shakespeare's Sonnets
An online collection of Shakespeare's Sonnets. My favorite is Sonnet 97 ;)
- RhymeZone rhyming dictionary and thesaurus
Dr. Seuss rhyming skills at the click of a button!!
- Discovering Traditional Sonnet Forms - ReadWriteThink
Great resource for teaching students to read, analyze, and write sonnets.
- Writing a Sonnet - For Dummies
Learn to write a sonnet in iambic pentameter, just like Shakespeare did. Discover the rhythm and rhyme scheme of the quatrains and couplets that make up the Shakespearean form.
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About This Poem
This sonnet portrays a woman whose experiences with love, although painful, bring to light important life lessons. She is not a victim, but rather a survivor; one who knows the difference between a good bluff and a bad hand. When love becomes a gamble, folding is your best bet!
I wrote this poem for my mom and presented it as her Mother's Day gift. It is a tribute to the sacrifices she made to bring me into this world. And, just to be fancy-dancy-smarty-pantsy, I printed it out on gorgeous gold cardstock, created a cute border with a stars-and-moon hole puncher, and framed it. To date, no other Mother's Day gift has ever brought forth so much smiles (and tears- lol).
My mother always says that she asked God to bless her with me; she made a vow that she would provide me with the best life possible. I'm glad she kept her promise!
I love you, Mom!!! ;)