07-25-05 | Travel Sonnet | Writing Forums
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07-25-05 | Travel Sonnet (1 Viewer)

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Senior Member
Literary Maneuvers: Travel Sonnet

Opens: Monday 25th of July
Closes: Saturday Morning (EST) 6th of August

Hi, everybody! This week's competition is dedicated to those who have traveled, are traveling, or will travel sometime soon. Whether you're escaping cold, rain, heat, or those pesky bugs they call kids this one is for you. If you are expanding your mind or deepening your tan, this goes out to you as well. And this is especially for those poor souls stuck taking business trips when all they want to do is put their feet up beside the pool.

The theme is (duh) travel. There is an opportunity for some great poems here. You can write about anything somehow related to travel: packing, driving to the airport, finding the perfect spot on the hotel's beach, or even an ant simply trying to get from Point A to Point B. Please feel free to really explore the topic.

So, sonnets. Depending on whom you ask, they are either quite simple or one of the most devilish forms created solely to torture would-be poets. Personally, I love to read sonnets but the act of writing one (*warning* ridiculous exaggeration coming) stretches the all-encompassing rubber band that is my talent to the breaking point. Why am I asking you to write one if it's supposed to be so difficult to do well? I have faith in the ability of the WF members to take up a challenge and write something wonderful. Plus, when you break a sonnet down into its individual parts, it's not really that hard.

What is a sonnet?

[an:93333b077d]For this competition, we are going to focus on the Shakespearean sonnet but there are other forms. If you are daring, I encourage you to look up the Italian sonnet and the Spenserian sonnet in your spare time.[/an:93333b077d]

A Shakespearean sonnet consists of three quatrains and a concluding couplet (14 lines total). The rhyme scheme is a-b-a-b, c-d-c-d, e-f-e-f, g-g and they are usually written in iambic pentameter.


  • Sonnet 116

    Let me not to the marriage of true minds (a)
    Admit impediments. Love is not love (b)
    Which alters when it alteration finds, (a)
    Or bends with the remover to remove. (b)

    O no, it is an ever fixed mark (c)
    That looks on tempests and is never shaken; (d)
    It is the star to every wand'ring barque, (c)
    Whose worth's unknown although his height be taken. (d)

    Love's not time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks (e)
    Within his bending sickle's compass come; (f)
    Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, (e)
    But bears it out even to the edge of doom. (f)

    If this be error and upon me proved, (g)
    I never writ, nor no man ever loved. (g)

For more information please click on the links below.

Iambic pentameter
Sonnets (scroll down to "The English Sonnet)

All of the usual rules apply (please refer to the LM Guide and previous competitions for details). If you have any questions, you may contact me directly or ask them in the “Free Love!” thread.

Quick reminders:

1. One submission per member.

2. Any comments should be enclosed within the off-topic tags.

[ot]Praise for awesome entry that I wish I had written.[/ot]


[ot:93333b077d]Praise for awesome entry that I wish I had written.[/ot:93333b077d]

3. Please, please check your spelling.

4. Don’t forget to title your piece (and put it in bold)

Good luck, everyone. I’m looking forward to reading your poems.

Edit: If I have made any mistakes or forgotten some vital piece of information, feel free to post below (using the off-topic tags) or send me a PM.


Senior Member
CRASH (newer version)


The plane had started rattling
Someone started screaming “WERE GOING DOWN!”
Suite cases fall to the ground clattering
There’s a loud crash, the plane hit the ground.

The sounds of sirens filled the air
Smoke is pouring from a gash in the plane
Running towards the wreckage, I didn’t care,
I just wanted to find my love, Elaine.

A spluttering figure is emerging
its shape soon defines; it is her, my love
We run to each other, lips converging
I’m elated, lifted to the sky above.

There’s a loud explosion, we fall, she’s dead
My eyes open, blood trickling from my head.

why am i the first at this always?


WF Veterans
[ot:3365650f46]Crazy Dude, you beat me to it. I was thinking about writing a out a plane crash also! Oh well I try somehting different[/ot:3365650f46]


WF Veterans
[ot:f044804a5c] Or at least, sort of off topic. A sonnet is written in iambic pentameter. Crazy Dude, what you have is not[/ot:f044804a5c]


WF Veterans
Miffed by Moving

The ever thumping bumps of cardboard crate,
The owner’s eyes perpetually sagged.
The growl of a man, kept up far too late,
Every possession, packed, boxed or bagged.

The groan of duct tape, spread over a box,
Pack away possessions we had forgot,
Tucked in the attic are delightful shocks,
Finding old treasures that were never sought.

The grunts of the movers, filling the air,
One taking that old sofa, rarely used.
Picks his way slowly down a littered stair,
Every single muscle being abused.

Of course, sometimes moving can be no fun,
But it’s not all that bad once you’ve begun.


Senior Member
Note to judges and the curious: This is not Huni's entry for the comp. Scroll down the page a little and you'll find her sonnet. DM

The Big Grey Bus

Oh! no, Please don’t sit here next to me
Weight Watchers never opened in your town?
There’s only room for two and not for three.
I hope that’s chocolate sauce across your gown.

What did your mother teach you nasty boy?
If I see it one more time I know I’ll scream,
Put it away, it’s surely not a toy.
Travelling on a bus is not my dream.

“Sush, or I’ll use the aisle for kiddy bowls.”
They should enforce laws before we travel
“No eating beans, garlic or cabbage rolls”
Or hear the sound of some judges gavel

Rushing off at midnight for a tink
Saying good-bye to strange six hour friends
Stretching on smelly seats to catch a wink
Hanging on as the driver hits the bends.

Ma, I so love you dearly as you know
but travelling on a bus is such a pain.
So, if you wish, my ‘sweetie face’ face to see
I beg you - send me tickets for a plane.


[ot:c875bbd38b]Aevin's two cents:

I want to send a plea to all the fiction writers out there ... Write sonnets. Now.

That sounded less of a plea than a command, I guess ....

Really, one of the reasons for these contests (besides just having a ton o' fun) is to experiment with forms you're unfamiliar with.

Don't be shy!

And don't worry about being judged to harshly! *shifty eyes*

Have fun, and bring on the sonnets![/ot:c875bbd38b]

Here's mine. Comments are welcome, but since I'm judging as well please omit scores.

by Aevin

The air--it's black--blasts up as I shoot down;
Through darkness deep and screaming wind I fall.
Inside this void no single form has shown;
My fear--it's black--deprives of sight and all.

No pit could ever be so deep and cold,
No chasm make a mortal man go blind
As this, which freezes victims weak and old,
And grows and feeds within the human mind.

Depression, like a fall through living black,
From light, to dark, from dark, to bitter death.
The journey starts; once down I can't go back,
In vicious wind I fight to draw my breath.

The plummet, endless journey, tortures me;
I only hope the bottom sets me free.


Senior Member
Oh! no!!! I just realised I never realised exactly what a sonnet is. Now I'm so embarrassed!!! Serves me right for not reading that instruction post properly.
So - am I disqualified or could I try to fix it? :cry: huni.


[ot:48bf9cdfb4]Lol. Go ahead and fix your entry--I'm sure no one will mind. As for the off-topic tags, just use the letters "ot" inside brackets before your text, then the same thing afterwards, but with a slash before it. When you type it, it should look like this:

[ot]Off-topic comments here.[/ot]


Senior Member
[ot:c83437bc31]okay then, whats iambic pentameter (its not in my english book and the definitions from online are just confusing)[/ot:c83437bc31]


Senior Member
The Grey Bus

What did your mother teach you nasty boy?
If I see that thing one more time I’ll scream,
Put it away, it’s surely not a toy.
Travelling on a bus is not my dream.

Oh! no, Please sir, don’t sit here next to me
Weight Watchers never opened in your town?
There’s only room for two and not for three.
I hope that’s chocolate sauce across your gown.

Rush off the bus at midnight for a tink
Saying good-bye to strange six hour friends
Stretch out on smelly seats to catch a wink
Hanging on as the driver hits the bends.

Ma, if you wish to see your girl again,
I beg you - send me tickets for a plane.


Senior Member
[ot:6236ee06af]Okay, well...this is my first sonnet ever, so yeah...it won't be pretty. Here goes...[/ot:6236ee06af]

Road Trip

Our eyes burned bright with a mischievious gleam
Soon plans flew from our lips in frantic bursts
The summer's ours--no parents--it's a dream
Two words--road trip--it's time to do our worst

Throw hastily packed bags into the trunk
And all five of us jump into my car
The traffic was light, what a piece of luck
Before long we had traveled long and far

The bass from the music pounds in our ears
We yelled and pointed as we spied state tags
In truth or dare relinquished all our fears
Leaving the state on roads that zig and zagged

Wherever we end up we'll have a blast
A great road trip but really not our last.


[ot:d4450ca76e]Crazy Dude,

As far as I'm concerned, all entries are "valid." If it's not in the sonnet form, points will be deducted. I feel like I'll probably be fairly lenient on that. We realize we may be asking a bit much in this challenge, and we don't want to scare people off because the form is difficult. The challenge, as always, is about having fun and trying something different.

If you want to edit your entry, or write a new one, I'm sure no one would mind.

I'll try explaining this one more time.

Iambic pentameter consists of ten syllables per line, and the syllables follow a pattern of stressed-unstressed. The unit of iambic pentameter, an "iamb," is simply one unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable. "The cat" would be an iamb. More importance is assigned to the word "cat," so the word "the" is pronounced with less of a stress. "the CAT." In the word, "Forward," the first syllable is stressed, but the second is unstressed, so it's not an iamb. "FOR-ward." It's tricky to get the hang of, but if you count it like this, it might help:

daDUM, daDUM, daDUM, daDUM, daDUM.

Each iamb has two syllables, one stressed, one unstressed. So a line of iambic pentameter would have five iambs.

Hope this was helpful.[/ot:d4450ca76e]


WF Veterans
[ot:00b0eebc11]Huni! I really liked your sonnet. It made me smile.[/ot:00b0eebc11]

Where Paradise Is

I stop halfway there to sunlit paradise
My speeding roadster sitting in the street
I ponder why I feel I’m leaving twice
To miss your touch in early evening heat

I turn around and drive to your abode
With no regret of missing wondrous times
Through cinnamon sands and endless road
I wonder of you and my heinous crimes

Shall I turn back around and leave for good
Will you forgive me girl with weeping eyes
Might kissing your sis be misunderstood
I swear when kissed I only thought of goodbyes

I pound the door and scream with love your name
Mary Anne, is your heart still left to claim


Senior Member
The Usual Story By Me And Mrs.

This one time me and Mrs. went to Greece,
We went along and saw a guy with mullet,
This fellow was a ruiner of our peace,
He hopped along with my gold watch and wallet.

The world and us seemed never to get truce,
As painfully came obvious in States,
Cause when our ship healed over while a cruise,
As fatties we were asked for counterweights.

And when we tried to get away in vain,
And in an auction placed the highest bid,
We got ourselves two plane tickets to Spain,
And sure enough we do live in Madrid!

So keep in mind that homeland's hard to ditch,
When Lady Luck is acting like a bitch.

[ot:6ee4b78603]I hope you had as much fun reading this that I had writing it.[/ot:6ee4b78603]
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