Author Topic: Definitions  (Read 12864 times)

Brownlee

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Re: Definitions
« Reply #75 on: October 25, 2010, 05:32:57 PM »
Oh dear, Eric…

R.S. Thomas, 'The Bright Field':

'In this unrhymed free verse Italian sonnet Thomas – a Welsh Anglican Priest […]' (Don Paterson, 101 Sonnets: from Shakespeare to Heaney, Faber and Faber, 1999, p. 110).


He shoots, he scores! 2-0.

Now, as you suggested the last quote (which was clear as day anyway) was an 'inference', I think to try and argue this one is as well, you're going to have to contact every English dictionary publisher in the world and somehow persuade them to change their definition of 'inference' so it fits your argument. (Although, somehow I think you're going to find some straws to clutch at.)

Give it up Eric – you've lost. At least others have had the humility and good grace to accept that free verse sonnets have been recognised as a form and that I have proved this.

Why can't you do the same? I would like to know because I am now at a loss to see how you can continue this argument in the face of clear evidence which proves my point, when you have provided nothing that disproves my point.

Is it because I have challenged, and defeated, your authority on the forum? (And coming from a 'newbie' that must really hurt.) Oh, but I thought you didn't value authority? I have to wonder though, and I'm sure other people are now doing the same.

Offline eric

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Re: Definitions
« Reply #76 on: October 25, 2010, 07:35:52 PM »
Paterson uses the words in describing a single piece.  Score 1 for you.  I do not remember anyone else going your way in the thread, except the enthusiastic Bar, but now that you have made at least one cogent quote by your one academic advocate and one agreeable acolyte, good on you.  

You are, by the way, still incorrect on the general proposition, but it would be redundant to say why.  At this point, as Rhett Butler said to Scarlett O'Hara:  "My dear, I don't give a damn" -- the hour is getting late, said the Joker to the Thief, and as I said it was time to quit a long while ago.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2010, 08:26:42 PM by eric »

Offline Bar

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Re: Definitions
« Reply #77 on: October 25, 2010, 08:26:33 PM »
So what should we conclude at the end? That a development did take place, actually, within the compass of the famous fourteen lines? a development of a new sonnet form (a sonnet with free impetus!), just as the Miltonic sonnet grew out of the 'normal' Petrarchan (and the Petrarchan from the popular song)? Or should we conclude, against the great, that what has developed can't be called a sonnet?

In the meantime I found, about the 'old' one, by Edwin Arlington Robinson:

". . . these little sonnet men,
Who fashion, in a shrewd mechanic way,
Songs without souls, that flicker for a day,
To vanish in irrevocable night."

This alone must have motivated innovation...

But I also found a beautiful 'normal' one, by A.E. Poe:


Silence


There are some qualities--some incorporate things,
That have a double life, which thus is made
A type of that twin entity which springs
From matter and light, evenced in solid and shade.
There is a two-fold Silence--sea and shore--
Body and soul. One dwells in lonely places,
Newly with grass o'ergrown; some solemn graces,
Some human memories and tearful lore,
Render him terrorless: his name's "No More."
He is the corporate Silence: dread him not!
No power hath he of evil in himself;
But should some urgent fate (untimely lot!)
Bring thee to meet his shadow (nameless elf,
That haunteth the lone regions where hath trod
No foot of man) commend thyself to God!


Please, let's all make peace. I'll go to the Sorbonne in a month to learn more about the sonnet, but this thread, were it not for the occasional kicks (springing from love of poetry only!), was instructive, informative, exciting!... and I thank you all.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2010, 08:34:12 PM by Bar »
Facing it, always facing it, that's the way to get through. Face it!
(Joseph Conrad)
Lifelessness is only a façade concealing forms of life unknown to us.
(Bruno Schulz)

Offline Amie

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Re: Definitions
« Reply #78 on: October 26, 2010, 01:29:46 AM »
Actually, my reading of it was that Paterson was saying that you could have elements of free verse in a sonnet. This isn't the same as saying 'free verse sonnet'. You can use vegetarian ingredients in meatballs - say breadcrumbs, tomato puree etc - but once you put meat in them, they aren't 'vegetarian meatballs'. (oh wait! I've just noticed at the top of this page, you have finally found a quote where he actually uses the term 'free verse sonnet'! At last! seemed to take a huge amount of digging to find even one reference, but never mind...)

Bar's right, the discussion has been interesting. And it's a shame that it got unpleasant on occasion, given that it seems to me it has been largely about semantics. If Brownlee had said, for example, "You could make a modified sonnet" or "You could develop the sonnet-like elements of your poem a bit more" I wouldn't have batted an eyelash. So, unless there is further unpleasantness that needs sorting out, I think I'm out of this one - I don't want to squabble just because a particular order of words doesn't make sense to me.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 06:12:29 AM by Amie »
"You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet." - Kafka

sweetgirl09

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Re: Definitions
« Reply #79 on: October 26, 2010, 11:32:59 AM »
Ah, I've come back to this party just as everyone's leaving. Has anyone quoted this poem in the discussion yet? I don't know what it adds to the debate, except it's lovely. It's 'Sonnet' by Billy Collins. Easily accessible by Googling 'Billy Collins Sonnet'. I've put that in in case the Mods delete the text for copyright reasons. I think it would be OK though as it epitomises 'fair use for comment or review'


All we need is fourteen lines, well, thirteen now,
and after this one just a dozen
to launch a little ship on love's storm-tossed seas,
then only ten more left like rows of beans.
How easily it goes unless you get Elizabethan
and insist the iambic bongos must be played
and rhymes positioned at the ends of lines,
one for every station of the cross.
But hang on here wile we make the turn
into the final six where all will be resolved,
where longing and heartache will find an end,
where Laura will tell Petrarch to put down his pen,
take off those crazy medieval tights,
blow out the lights, and come at last to bed.


Included in the book, Sailing Around the Room: New and Selected Poems.

Offline Amie

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Re: Definitions
« Reply #80 on: October 26, 2010, 11:40:26 AM »
Yes, I've seen that one before, it's brilliant. The irony of the deviation from form is so well handled - especially all those extra syllables to cram in 'Elizabethan'.
"You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet." - Kafka