Lesson 3 – Assignment: It’s time to write a Shakespearean sonnet!

Assignment:  Even though the sonnet form is quite old, I want your subject matter to be contemporary.  You must follow the form without any variation:  Fourteen lines, Rhyme scheme of abab cdcd efef gg, Iambic pentameter.  (The two poems are the same, but the second one shows how the words break into syllables and accents.  The unbold and bold print following the iambic form:  unstress / stress.)


Obsession present with seductive switch.

Ablaze or absent rises bitter foe.

Demanding drug, the lucence calls, “Bewitch

The slave!”  I moan, “Can light be hopeless woe?”

The life of matter slips through porous speech

Of worthless words.  I cast aside and look

Away.  My self denied the rights of peace.

“I am unfettered, loose…” the doctor’s hook

Has fleeting cover.  Caught, I need to clutch

I must remain aloof.  Enchanter wins.

Disorder demons manage trigger touch.

I flip; I slipped by flipping.  Chant chagrined

My feeble fling at normal.  Beacon fixed.

Compulsion thrives, my pointless try eclipsed.



Ob/ses/sion pres/ent with se/duc/tive switch.  a

A/blaze or ab/sent ris/es bit/ter foe.  b

De/mand/ing drug, the lu/cence calls, “Be/witch  a

The slave!”  I moan, “Can light be hope/less woe?”  b

The life of mat/ter slips through po/rous speech  c

Of worth/less words.  I cast a/side and look  d

A/way.  My self de/nied the rights of peace.  c

“I am un/fet/tered, loose…” the doc/tor’s hook  d

Has fleet/ing cov/er.  Caught, I need to clutch  e

must re/main a/loof.  En/chant/er wins.  f

Dis/or/der de/mons man/age trig/ger touch.  e

flip; I slipped by flipp/ing.  Chant cha/grined  f

My fee/ble fling at nor/mal.  Bea/con fixed.  g

Com/pul/sion thrives, my point/less try e/clipsed.  g