Tuesday, September 30, 2008

You Have to Write 'Em Before You Can Teach 'Em

I was asked to teach a lesson on ... sonnets! So I thought I should try it myself before asking my students to do it. The iambic pentameter rule is just about impossible, but I got the syllables per line and rhyming pattern to work. So here are my first three attempts.

Sonnet 1
Light eternal within our souls desire:
A deep, longing hunger unsatisfied.
Wandering ever, we seek a bonfire
To warm the lonely emptiness denied.
Too often pallid replacements parade
As luminous imposters of support,
And our withered, accepting spirits fade
While lasting visions of heaven abort.
But happy the thirst-stricken, striving one
Whose appetite only the real food craves
Till stumbling and weary and nearly done
She finds the host bread and blood wine that saves.
Poured down to us from eternal ladle,
Jesus slakes thirst from his lowly cradle.

Sonnet 2
Rapid-fire sound bites blast embattled brains
Till our defenseless resistance falters
And we surrender all that yet remains
At the feet of advertising altars.
Shell out big bucks for material goods
To embiggen status and sex appeal!
Snared, you will never get out of the woods
Of shallow values based on how you feel.
But silence offers a golden retreat
To the discerning taste of odd thinkers
Who deafen ears to the ad man’s drum beat.
Of solitude’s wisdom they’re deep drinkers.
A fool listens not, neither he takes heed,
But the wise sow in silence better seed.

Sonnet 3
Evil advances covered by dark night,
When shadows hide ominous, lurking dread
Of quick death or massive towering might
Falling mercilessly upon our head.
We stumble and cry out in fear and shame
Hoping a hero will espy our plight,
Will know that destiny calls him to fame,
Come to our rescue and put up a fight.
Battling brutally all over the town,
The crowds gasp at his strength and endurance,
While buildings get smashed and are tumbled down,
And agents groan at cost of insurance.
Fear not, you who cower without hope’s light
For you’ll be delivered by this Dark Knight.

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