Illuminate and extract the uses of rhyme scheme in Sonnet 130?

Expert Answers
jacklarson eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Though the sonnet has taken slightly different forms over the centuries, all English (Shakespearean) sonnets, including 130, follow an identical rhyme scheme: three alternately rhyming quatrains (a-b-a-b) followed by a single rhyming couplet (a-a), for a total of 14 lines. Identifying these lines in the actual poem we have:

My mistress' eyes are nothing like the sun; (a)
Coral is far more red than her lips' red; (b)
If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun; (a)
If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head. (b)
I have seen roses damask'd, red and white, (c)
But no such roses see I in her cheeks; (d)
And in some perfumes is there more delight (c)
Than in the breath that from my mistress reeks. (d)
I love to hear her speak, yet well I know (e)
That music hath a far more pleasing sound; (f)
I grant I never saw a goddess go; (e)
My mistress, when she walks, treads on the ground: (f)
And yet, by heaven, I think my love as rare (g)
As any she belied with false compare. (g)