I’ve now become a practiced sonneteer
With hundreds of these verses to my name,
And I can make these fourteen lines appear
Within an hour, just playing the sonnet game.
Yet mere facility is not the same
As quality, which calls for inspiration
And genius, to keep lines from falling lame
And justify a master’s reputation.
So If I seek for critics’ approbation
And mean to please poetic connoisseurs,
I’ll need to use the best of my persuasion
To guarantee that what I write endures.
For only if this verse stirs your applause
Shall it survive the ravening of Time’s jaws.