Wordsworth wrote an endless poem in blank verse on” the growth of a poet’s mind.” I shall attempt a more modest feat for a more distracted age: a blog, “Things which a Lifetime of Trying to Be a Poet has Taught Me.”
Having already fallen in love with the form and become intrigued with its possibilities, (surely not all already explored!) for modern verse, I was enraptured in my studies of Medieval and Renaissance literature by what I was learning about the history of the Sonnet. I was also becoming intrigued with the possibilities of using a form to explain or expound that form itself—something I would try many times with the Sonnet and other forms too. Was I volunteering for the job called for at the end? You bet.
SONNET XXVI: THE SONNET
In Petrarch’s soul there bloomed a song whose name
Was Laura; so with laurel wreath the Muse
Crowned song and singer, and to us the fame
Of both comes down in lines we cannot use.
But Wyatt and Surrey heard them from afar
And with bold, though perhaps yet unsure, hands,
They plucked the laurel, careful not to mar
Its form, and planted it in their own lands.
In that richer soil it grew full green,
Tended by husbandmen of highest skill
Who coaxed it into blossoms yet unseen.
It withers now, but could yet flourish still
Were but one gardener left to carry on
The work of Sidney, Spenser, Milton, Donne.
Remember: for more poetry like this, go to https://www.createspace.com/3562314 and order Stars Through the Clouds! Also look for Reflections from Plato’s Cave and Inklings of Reality, Williams’ newest books from Lantern Hollow Press: Evangelical essays in pursuit of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty. https://lanternhollow.wordpress.com/store/.
Posted on April 29, 2013, in Donald Williams, Edmund Spenser, Poetry and tagged Edmund Spenser, Henry Howard the Earl of Surrey, John Donne, John Milton, Poetry, Sir Philip Sidney, Sir Thomas Wyatt, the sonnet. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.