I need help writing a sonnet for English class: I am in an English honors class, so it needs to have a high level vocab. It needs to be 14 line with an ABAB CDCD EFEF GG rhyme scheme. Each line needs to be 10 syllables, the sonnet can be about anything at all. It needs to have a volta, sestet and octave. (And of course a closing couplet.)
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This assignment is meant to give you an appreciation of the complexity of the sonnet form, and how that form allows for a fairly complex emotional statement. Particularly inaudible and invisible to the untrained reader is the way each section proceeds toward the sonnet's ultimate statement. In composing your sonnet, I suggest you start by asking yourself what emotion you wish to convey; then you can build your structure toward that end. Because the English language is only lightly inflected, compared to Latinated languages, the "rhyming" part of your assignment will appear the most difficult and therefore might take up too much of your thinking. A better concentration would be how the form can help you rather than hinder you. Find a striking first line -- 10 syllables, with a reasonable ending that can be easily rhymed. Use English's variety of methods to modify -- adjectives, phrases, clauses -- and its ability to contract, in order to fulfill the foot and syllable requirements. Good luck - hope this helps. "Oh, would I were a bird all full of flight!"
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