Thursday, April 19, 2012


“Writing free verse is like playing tennis with the net down,”   
—Robert Frost

     The twelve of you began our seminar
     On sonnets with some trepidations, but
     At term’s end now, you see we’ve traveled far
     And wide in what you thought might be a rut.

     The vast expanse of global sonnetry,
     From Petrarch down to Nemerov and Frost,
     Has proved a field of dreams whereon we see
     A game that many play and most have lost—

     A game like baseball with its numerous rules
     And umps to call you out when caught off base,
     Or, better, tennis, where you’d look like fools
     Without a net to demonstrate your grace.

          As long as poets write and readers hear,
          Posterity shall praise the sonneteer.