you spoke the earth and sky in place
you spoke in place the creatures too
you spoke the fiery stars in space
you speak and you make all things new
you whisper and the mountains shake
just speak and ev’ry knee will bow
a shout from you: the earth would break
one word is all I’m asking now
at a word from you the lame can walk
at a word from you the sightless see
at a word from you the mute can talk
at a word from you the demons flee
oh Lord why don’t you hear my plea
oh Lord would you speak a word for me?
sharing with dVerse
Note: Logos is the Greek word for “Word”. In the New Testament book of John, the “Word of God” was made flesh in Jesus Christ, and thus Jesus is Logos personified.
“Samuel!” He heard his name. Dead of night
Temple bed, near the flick’ring lantern light
To the priest (name of Eli: poor of sight)
“Did you call? Helping you is my delight!”
“Wasn’t me. Were you dreaming? Back to bed”
So he went. On his pillow placed his head
Twice again: his name was called. So he said,
“Eli, sir, you must have called!” But instead:
Eli said, “Perhaps the Lord calls to you
if again, heed my words here’s what to do:
to him say, ‘speak, for I’m your servant true’.”
thus God spoke: words to him that were brand new
Gift to God: God gifted you – prophets sight
for to him, you listened with all your might
yesterday I was reading from 1st Samuel chapter 3 and so thought I would try re-telling the call of Samuel in sonnet form.
and now the boring stuff (for poetic nerds like myself) – feel free to not read this part unless you really enjoy discussion of form:
I liked the rhythm of the first line…so thought I would try to keep that rhythm throughout the poem (not as successful as I had hoped, but I think I came close). The stereotypical sonnet is written in iambic pentameter (2 syllables per foot – or “beat”, and 5 feet per line, with second syllable of a foot getting the emphasis. I tried to go a bit different with mine…each line is supposed to start and end with a dactyl (a 3 syllable foot where the 1st syllable is stressed). In between the dactyls, either 2 iambs or 2 trochees (a trochee, like an iamb, is a 2 syllable foot, except that it’s the 1st syllable that is emphasized.
Sharing this with dVerse for Open Link Night
can it still be called a sonnet if it lacks of fourteen lines, yet has one-hundred-forty syllables? And if the words fit within a prescribed rhyme scheme, so instead of counting lines, syllables were counted and then multiples of ten were all rhymed and broken into lines they amounted to Elizebethan form or they mimed the schemes of Petrarch or Spencer?
Can you call it a sonnet if it reads more like prose than poem, but it still adheres to a few of the rules? Is it a sonnet? Who knows!
Count my syllables, and after each ten, make a line break. Is it a sonnet then?
The above is my experiment in what I would like to call a “prose sonnet”. My idea with this is to do with the sonnet what Allen Ginsberg did to the haiku with his “American Sentence”. If you do count the syllables in my piece, you will find (unless I miscounted), that syllables with a multiple of 10 are rhymed ABAB,CDCD,EFEF,GG as would be the case in an Elizebethan sonnet.
I’m posting this to dVerse, for Open Link Night. Please do go visit, and read the works of some rather fabulous poets! (This also responds to Bjorn’s Tuesday prompt to write a poem in questions)
One by one we bid each other goodbye.
There are the hugs given to friends who are
heading to the airport from where they’ll fly
to some resort. They never seem too far
away, as we know that they’ll soon be back.
Harder, though, are those final farewells, said
to loved ones who have stepped beyond the crack
that separates this world from the next. Red
eyed from grief, it might be tempting to think
we’d be better off if we didn’t bare
our souls to that most temporary link
called friendship, and yet, how sad not to dare!
for though each life like each flame one day ends
we’re richer for the time we’ve spent with friends
for dVerse Open Link Night
The whole cycle, thus far, can be found if you click on the link for “The Elements – Sonnet Cycles” at the top of this page, and then select “fire”
It was over a year ago that I posted part IX of this cycle, so if you need some context, click on “The Elements – Sonnet Cycles” at the top of this page, and then select “fire” (or select “water” if you would like to read a cycle that has actually been completed) . Needless to say, this installment is drastically overdue.
Around the circle a silence descends.
There’s a feeling, sensed by all, that soon
this joyous time celebrated with friends
must draw to a close. Someone strums a tune
softly on a guitar. A soothing song:
perhaps to the flames, or maybe to those
with whom you would now gladly carry on
(though strangers an hour ago). Who knows
why the fire works in this way: to draw
people together from stranger to friend?
Perhaps, though, this circle has its own flaw:
we are reluctant to let the time end.
And so, it is with a most heartfelt sigh
One by one we bid each other goodbye
Sharing with dVerse for Open Link Night
A border is a crossing/division/barrier
a dotted line on a map that says
this side/that side
a dotted line that says
mine/should be mine
a dotted line on a map that gives
an excuse for hate
a dotted line that says
“Border” is the theme of the day over at dVerse
You are quiet
Your voice I hear not
And in silence I suffer
Longing to hear you once again
O why do you keep your lips pressed closed
When I am drowning in the quiet
And a word from you would be
Breath in my lungs to sustain me?
It is not so much your reticence that
Has doomed me to suffer this disquieting quiet
But my own foolishness
For when you have spoken I have not been keen to listen
Release me from this hostile peace
And I will open my ears to hear
a free verse sonnet for dVerse