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Sonnet to Spring ( May Contest)

The soft gentle warmth of a Spring morning
sees sunshine and sunbeams dapple the trees.
Our season awakes, stretching and yawning,
her fanfare of bird song wafts in the breeze.

On branches, unfurl the sweet tender buds
springing to life after season’s long rest.
A carpet of green rolls out in the woods:
Winter is gone and it’s time to get dressed.

Yet whilst Spring beguiles, teases and tempts us
with promises proffered, gilded with gold,
fey maiden is she, that toys with our trust
the warmth of her smile is cruelly cold.

Throw open your doors and welcome the Spring,
wise men remember she still has a sting.

I have included a voice recording
http://vocaroo.com/i/s0LIu6KXTcj6

Last few words: 
Occasionally, I like to try and write within the restraints of a strict format. If nothing else, it sets a challenge, but does hone writing skills too. The English (Shakespearean) Sonnet has three quatrains and a couplet, written in iambic pentameter, with a rhyming scheme of abab, cdcd, efef, gg. On top of that, the sonnet should produce an argument or dilemma, which the couplet resolves. The site seems to be all things Spring at the moment, for us in the Northern hemisphere at least. So I took my inspiration from there.
Editing stage: 

Comments

a poem of Spring should be! You seem to have hit it right on. I can find nothing to criticize and really enjoyed the sonnet! ~ Gee.
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for reading and dropping by. I'm really pleased you liked it, as it's my first attempt at this particular form.
Been tweeking it for a week or three, but feel I'm finally somewhere near where I wanted to be. Jx

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That's very kind of you. It's really great to see so many entries for the Spring contest. Jx

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How sweet to hear your very special voice reciting. Us guys born in Brooklyn NY, we don't talk like dat, know whad I mean.. You know how to read poetry, and having heard so many readings, your reading is top. (the accent a helps tiny bit, too). I love your poem. I recently saw an astounding performance of Emily Dickenson in the film "A Quiet Passion", and your poem has the sharpness and wit of many of her poems. Seeing the duplicity of spring is really well presented.- the cruelest month! Love the trees getting dressed. I suppose Hopkins doesn't own the word "dapple", i just haven't seen it used other than him.
I love sonnets, and am now generally writing at least one a week. I think they are liberating, because no matter what you can keep the muse working and sometimes they are serious and sometimes just to have fun. I can send you a few if you like...
Brava! very wonderful reading and craft!

Eumolpus
I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing
than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance
ee cummings

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Eumolpus
I'd rather learn from one bird how to sing
than teach ten thousand stars how not to dance
ee cummings

Praise indeed.
When I started writing poetry, not that long ago, I seemed to have a lot to say and it flowed free form. Sometimes now I want to write a poem, but it just gets stuck. I found experimenting with strict forms bumps me out of that stuckness! It gives me something to hang onto I suppose.
Yes please, do send me some of yours, would love to read them, you could message me with them perhaps.
Regards dapple, it's not an uncommon word over here in UK. It means mottled. Used to describe a particular mottled grey on horses, dapple grey and used to describe the changing patterns of sunlight through say woodland. I say not uncommon, but possibly a bit archaic.
Jx

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author comment

will have to be abandoned
in front of your summers/springing
one
extremely well done

Thank you very much for the feedback, but don't abandon your poem, just keep going with it till your happy. I would say I have a cupboard full of the ghosts of poems, only these days it's a memory stick. Much more clinical.
Jx

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but do also read and advise
edit!

We'll have to agree to disagree there Jerry I don't think line 1 is off at all.
There may be the odd stretched point, Poets do bend the rules from time to time and they do slip extra syllables in here and there, but it is still a recognisable sonnet. To quote from a paper on Sonnet writing -
"Shakespeare himself often played with the form, using feminine (soft) endings, switching iambs, and other tricks when he needed them"
More importantly, it has the component parts of a sonnet. It isn't just about lovely spring, pretty flowers, sunny days - la, de, da, de, da, it has the 'sting in the tail or the volta, that a sonnet is supposed to deliver.
It doesn't just use words that rhyme, it uses words that enhance the meaning, thus raising it above mere doggerel.
I'm not saying this is a great sonnet by any means, but I'm happy with it for now, that doesn't mean I won't ever edit it though.
Thanks for adding your opinion, wouldn't do if we all agreed on everything.
Jx

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That's a great critique. I'm always open to any suggestions, so would love to hear yours'
I would agree with you on buds and woods, it is a half rhyme really.
It's great that you've joined in like this, so pleased.
I've read your first poem and am very impressed, I am just thinking how best to critique it, as I can't find a way of making it any better!
I will go over there and attempt - grins
Jx

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author comment

Ask as many questions as you want.
This is a tricky one, you will get poets on here saying - yes it's a sonnet. You will also get poets saying as it doesn't strictly stick with iamb all the time it isn't. It is written in pentameter (ten syllables per verse and a verse is classed as a line in poetry speak).
There are two 'forms' of sonnet - Shakespearean and Petrarchan or the English Sonnet (Shakespeare didn't invent it, just used it very well) and the Italian Sonnet, used by Milton and Wordsworth, although established much earlier.
So, Jerry doesn't think it is a sonnet, that's ok by me. I do, that's also ok. There are enough sonnet features for it to pass muster.
If you are wanting to learn exactly how to write one, (Shakespearean) then try to stick to 14 lines of iambic pentameter. Arrange the 14 lines into 3 quatrains (groups of 4 lines) with a couplet at the end and follow the rhyming pattern abab cdcd efef gg. Most importantly and this is something a few budding sonneteers forget, the sonnet has to have a volta - an about turn, a new slant. This usually appears in the 3rd quatrain and is resolved in the rhyming couplet.
I might not have written a sonnet before, but I have studied plenty.
I hope this helps. Post the sonnet you are working on, polished or not and hopefully if it doesn't conform, people will help you realise why.
Mostly, just have fun!
Chin chin - oh it's a bit early for that, well lets have a virtual cuppa instead.
Jx

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author comment

Lol, it's a good start. Don't think of the syllable as part of the rhyming scheme it isn't, it's how you wrote WORD/ing. This is a trochee stressed/unstressed. re/MARK is iambic it's unstressed/stressed.
Go for the 10 syllable and the rhyme scheme and try with the wording. Jx

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I have visited your web site before, very impressive and some really good poems on there. Of course, I read both your sonnets on this visit and really enjoyed them.
However I would say in both of them, you missed the volta, which I think is a very important part of the sonnet. But they are both beautiful in their form, structure and theme.
No falling out, we can't agree all the time and I accept your point of view.
Cheers Jx

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is it that I can never write a sonnet this well? Damned things lol.............stan

Kind sir.........but I'm sure you can easily surpass this.
Jx

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I thought sonnet or no sonnet doesn't really matter as the contest doesn't restrict you with a form. What matters I think is that you've perfectly meet the contest subject. The language use is no. one. Your record also added another dimension to it This is absolutely a winner.
Thank you for sharing and best of luck dear.

❤❤❤❤❤❤

Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words
........Robert Frost☺

Rula. I'm really pleased you enjoyed it.
It's lovely to see so many entries for the competition.
Poor Stan and Gee, don't know how they'll pick a winner.
Jx

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That is really kind of you.
Thank you.
Jx

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I needn't add.
When are you going to run a workshop? It's past time oh ex moderator. The Italian sonnet would be a good subject.
You are primed and ready to go.
In the meantime try some other "strict" forms such as a Rhyming Sestina or a Ballade. I would love to read a Ballade by you.
Or you could write an Ottava Rima.
Or...

I loved the sonnet.

W. H. Snow

A poet is a nightingale, who sits in darkness and sings to cheer its own solitude with sweet sounds. Percy Bysshe Shelley

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Thank you for coming by , reading and commenting. Much appreciated.
Would be delighted to run a workshop, even more delighted if you would moderate for me. Will also ask Jess, he'll be an excellent person to keep me on the rails too.
Give me a day or three to get back home and put my thinking cap on.
Jx

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