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Eulogy to Light by RedOrchid [Reviews - 17]

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This story was entered in the Sycophant Hex: Spring Faire Festival under the General Story: Sonnets.

The criteria is below:

Summary: Write two to four sonnets exploring the secret thoughts, conflicts, or longings of any main character(s) featured in this archive. (note: open archive)

1. Each sonnet must be exactly fourteen lines long.
2. For guidelines about your rythmn and rhyming options, please visit-- http://www.poetrydoctor.org/sonnet.htm.

The original version of this challenge allowed the possibility of writing a less traditional ("modern") sonnet without the usual rhythm-rhyme strictures. This option was provided in the spirit of inviting first-time poets to ease into the practice of writing formal poetry. However, due to popular demand, all sonnets submitted for this challenge must now follow one of the traditional rhythm-rhyme patterns. It's pleasantly surprising that readers are full of "passionate intensity"* about upholding traditional poetic forms against the lax standards of modernity!

*Yeats, "The Second Coming" (not a sonnet).

A/N: I’ve chosen the Shakespearian sonnet as my model, with one modification: The structure of the fist twelve lines follows the Shakespearian pattern: three stanzas of four lines in iambic pentameter, cross-rhymed (ABAB, CDCD, EFEF). The last two lines conserve the Shakespearian couplet structure (GG), but have been changed from pentameter (10 syllables) to the French tradition of alexandrines (12 syllables). For additional comments about the metre and rhyme, see the A/N at the end.


Eulogy to Light


Shall Darkness be my only faithful friend,
The only one to hold me while I sleep?
With me in all, ‘till life’s grim, gloomy end,
My compass through the wicked waters deep,
Through seas of black despair, where all is lost
To me: all life, all hope, all future chance
That good one day’ll repay the heady cost
Of joining in the Devil’s merry dance.
The debt is owed in blood, and on my arm
The proof of false allegiance proudly sworn
Resides, and tells the story of the harm
My heart has caused – closed off, a prickly thorn.

A traitor is a traitor, and a beast will he
Forever be; so also is the case... with me.


In shadows I was born, in darkness deep,
In darkness did I stay as I grew strong.
I never sought the sun, the light to keep
Me warm, when light in my world seemed so wrong.
Affection never was bestowed on me,
And I was thankful to avoid the strings
Of weakness and of firm captivity,
Which Love, with fatal accuracy, brings.
And then she came, and then she ruined all,
A crawling parasite beneath my skin,
Consuming me, preparing my great fall,
Engaging in a fight I could not win.

I opened up my heart, I let her come inside,
Believed Love was eternal, but fickle Fortune’d lied.


It happened on a snowy winter’s day,
Without a warning, with no sign of doom,
No glorious end when in the snow she lay,
Face turned towards the skies of greyish gloom.
Unseeing were her eyes, her lips turned pale
She looked so young, so lovely and so frail,
Her hair spread out, a curly chocolate veil.
Who would have thought a heart so strong could fail?
I wanted to avenge her death, but how,
When there was naught to blame but cruel fate?
I walk around the house, so empty now,
Where Darkness plays the mistress as of late.

I’ve said farewell to daylight, I’ve made her tomb my bed
F’what point is there to living, now that she is dead?


A/N: 1) Every syllable in these sonnets is very deliberate and chosen with great care. Pronunciation is to be adapted to respect the metre, e.g. “glorious” (III:3 – glo-ryus), “towards” (III:4 – to-wards), “cruel” (III:10 – cru-el), "accuracy" (II:8 – a-cu-ra-cy), "ruined" (II:9 – ru-ind).

2) The rhyme scheme CDCD in sonnet III has been assimilated to CCCC for stylistic reasons of dramatic effect.

3) The Alexandrine metre allows for an additional unstressed syllable at the césure, as in III:13-14. (“Césure” is the French term, meaning the middle of the verse, usually between syllables six and seven (when dealing with alexandrines) – I have no idea what it’s called in English but hope you’ll forgive me for that.)

Eulogy to Light by RedOrchid [Reviews - 17]

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