Posts Tagged ‘sonnet’

Let me not coin new meaning to words

Or alter their sense for mere badinage:

Broken pediments may add grace to facades

But words void of wit and sense are BeauNash

Playing dandy among a mournful wake.

I have miscalled pediments impediments

And Paul Bremer for Beau Brummel, a rake.

Words are a good man’s trusted implements-

In music chords do allow inversion

But mix up fundament for aliment

another might think it as some perversion,

If in need of vigor take supplement.

But if you are not Dam Malaprop

Treat words and their sense as walk on tight rope.


Original Version:

Let me not to the marriage of true minds

Admit impediments. Love is not love

Which alters when it alteration finds,

Or bends with the remover to remove:

O no; it is an ever-fixed mark,

That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;

It is the star to every wandering bark,

Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.

Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks

Within his bending sickle’s compass come;

Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,

But bears it out even to the edge of doom.

   If this be error and upon me proved,

   I never writ, nor no man ever loved.


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My credit is too low- bankruptcy

Weighs heavily on me like a ball of chain,

And each way-out I find it soon in vain-

Do I make for the sea of bankruptcy

With Chapter ‘Leven I might be afloat;

Yet ’tis a gentle luxury to weep

That I have not the cloudy winds to keep

But under Seven dash my brains direct

On this nagging ball of reputation?

Such are legal conundrums left by law:

Poor Shylock’s knife cannot cut them but draw

rebuke instead from the congregation.

Law thus dispenses relief worth a straw

But loath help him gain lost reputation.

Original Version:

On Seeing Elgin marbles

My spirit is too weak—mortality

   Weighs heavily on me like unwilling sleep,

   And each imagined pinnacle and steep

Of godlike hardship tells me I must die

Like a sick eagle looking at the sky.

   Yet ’tis a gentle luxury to weep

   That I have not the cloudy winds to keep

Fresh for the opening of the morning’s eye.

Such dim-conceived glories of the brain

   Bring round the heart an undescribable feud;

So do these wonders a most dizzy pain,

   That mingles Grecian grandeur with the rude

Wasting of old time—with a billowy main—

   A sun—a shadow of a magnitude.


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What can you be? Death! you sound much more

Profound and wiser, than you will ever

Be on this side of living or the other:

Death, I shall name you are least spoken of

Among genteel or rude folks, What’s it?

You hold no part of continents where life

May set foot and claim neither for fame nor

for light,-it casts no farther than dead wall.

If thou be one what avails my life to fight

A dead weight that is better cast aside?

Death I shall name you are least spoken of

And get on with precious joy of life’s savor.

Death is least of the heartaches that I need

While life has with heat of love enow for now.


 John Donne original:

Death be not proud, though some have called thee

Mighty and dreadfull, for, thou art not soe,/

For, those, whom thou think’st, thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poore death, nor yet canst thou kill mee.

From rest and sleepe, which but thy pictures bee,

Much pleasure, then from thee, much more must flow,

And soonest our best men with thee doe goe,

Rest of their bones, and soules deliverie.
Thou art slave to Fate, Chance, kings, and desperate men,

And dost with poyson, warre, and sicknesse dwell,
And poppie, or charmes can make us sleepe as well,

And better then thy stroake; why swell’st thou then?

One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally,

And death shall be no more; death, thou shalt die.



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Leda and the Swan-W.B Yeats

A sudden blow: the great wings beating still
Above the staggering girl, her thighs caressed
By the dark webs, her nape caught in his bill,
He holds her helpless breast upon his breast.

How can those terrified vague fingers push
The feathered glory from her loosening thighs?
And how can body, laid in that white rush,
But feel the strange heart beating where it lies?

A shudder in the loins engenders there
The broken wall, the burning roof and tower
And Agamemnon dead.
Being so caught up,

So mastered by the brute blood of the air
Did she put on his knowledge with his power
Before the indifferent beak could let her drop?

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Much have I pined in the paperwork,
And many accounts and books tallied;
Round many expense accounts have I rallied
And found how Corporate heads work.
Oft of one name in particular I shirk
To cite among many follies in my work:
Yet did I never breathe or e’en bark
Till I saw Madoff scheme take off sky-high:
Then felt I like some stupid pen-pusher
Wading through worthless assets rated high:
My eyes ever on entries and number
Must keep my judgment suspended-fie!
Work is worship: but a lean purse, my boon
I guess Madoff has his god of Mammon

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