How Not To Write A Sonnet In the Style of William Shakespeare

it is true that most sonnets possess
an iambic pentameter beat
yet I don’t think my poetry less
and in fact it may be quite a treat

and so here I submit unto you
anapestic trimetrical verse
is it better? Quite doubtful ’tis true
yet it certainly could be much worse

to have fun with a poem is my goal
and I like to bend rules (just a bit)
so my words I’ll continue to dole
and just hope you will not mind my wit

if like Shakespeare you’re hoping to be
when you write sonnets, don’t copy me!


at dVerse, Tony Maude is having us write sonnets.  I actually quite enjoy the form, but often like breaking (or tweaking) the rules.  Hope you don’t mind too much!


22 thoughts on “How Not To Write A Sonnet In the Style of William Shakespeare

  1. Laughing out loud 😀

    And, at least according to Don Paterson, sonnets don’t have to be pentametric, iambic or even to rhyme. Check out his book of 101 Sonnets if you don’t believe me.

    • Thanks Tony! If you are laughing out loud, I have done my job 🙂 Yes, sonnets certainly can come in a multitude of forms…it’s nice that one can still be flexible within a given form!

  2. smiles… having fun with a poem is one of my goals as well… and i too don’t mind, bending the rules a bit… a clever write bryan…

  3. ha. i am glad you had fun with it….that is about the best i can muster when it comes to form…have a bit of fun and hit near the mark…but never quite there….ha…..break those rules…and form indeed…

  4. Really dug your cleverness & audacity; I jumped on the rhyme too, and just flopped the feet around for several meters. I, too, found that fun was more appropriate than perfect iambic form. Nice job; smiles.

  5. Funny and charming! I have only been by a couple of times, but each time was a treat. I drop in more often.

  6. Ha ha…still you held to the form you chose to write and I’m not sure I could have managed that without quite a bit of thought and work! Very clever and funny…loved that inverted couplet..made me giggle.

  7. I find it interesting you chose anepest over iambic…definitely a twist. Shakespearean-like or not…I’m quite impressed.

  8. Clever indeed. I miss some images, but you made up for that by invoking Shakespeare–and I used very few images myself, actually.

  9. You know how people say ‘I wish I’d written this’? Well, I SO wish I would have written this! I have so many memories of struggling with meter and form back in the day! Of raving against what I considered ‘high-brow’ and ‘elitist’ poetry speak (things like sestinas and – one of my all time favourites – iambic pentameter)! You made me smile with this, but even as I did I found myself counting syllables and checking rhymes (times have changed, apparently). It is a beautiful write! Really!

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