The first is Francesco Petrarch, born on 20 July 1304 in the city of Arezzo, Italy. He is credited historically with the development of the sonnet form, having written 317 poems based on the rules established by 13th Century poet, Guittone of Arezzo.
Gli Occhi Di Chi' Io Parlai
Those eyes, 'neath which my passionate rapture rose,
The arms, hands, feet, the beauty that erewhile
Could my own soul from its own self beguile,
And in a separate world of dreams enclose,
The hair's bright tresses, full of golden glows,
And the soft lightning of the angelic smile
That changed this earth to some celestial isle,
Are now but dust, poor dust, that nothing knows.
And yet I live! Myself I grieve and scorn,
Left dark without the light I loved in vain,
Adrift in tempest on a bark forlorn;
Dead is the source of all my amorous strain,
Dry is the channel of my thoughts outworn,
And my sad harp can sound but notes of pain.
(Translated by Thomas Wentworth Higginson)
The Petrarchan sonnet, at least in its Italian-language form, generally follows a set rhyme scheme, which runs as follows:
a b b a a b b a c d c d c d.
The first eight lines, or octave, do not often deviate from the abba abba pattern, but the last six lines, or sestet, frequently follow a different pattern, such as cde cde, cde ced, or cdc dee. Each line also has the same number of syllables, usually 11 or 7 by Petrarch. Source
The second poet being featured today has written many sonnets in the Petrarchan form. (born
This link provides additional quotes from Neruda's work.
What I find fascinating about reading Neruda's sonnets (many more can be found HERE) in English, is the absence of a rhyme scheme and loss of the iambic meter, which translators have not been at pains to carry over. What is left is the essence of the poem, the imagery, the words and the structure of octave and sestet, which Neruda further splits up into two quatrains and two tercets. This seems to offer a more modern approach to writing in a form that is 7 centuries old, and in the past, I have attempted to write my English poetry in a 'Nerudan' style. (Example HERE)
Our challenge today (and I apologize if it is not so 'mini') is to write a sonnet, choosing either the classic style of Francesco Petrarch, or in the style of Pablo Neruda, as his poems appear in translation. The Sunday Challenge is posted on Saturday at CST to allow extra time for the form challenge.
We stipulate that only poems written for this challenge may be added to the Mr Linky. Management reserves the right to remove unrelated links, but invites you to share a poem of your choice on Open Link Monday.