About Me

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Mark Olival-Bartley studied applied linguistics at Hawaii Pacific University, attaining B.A. and M.A. degrees in Teaching English as a Second Language, and poetry at the City College of New York. He is now writing a dissertation on the sonnets of E. A. Robinson at LMU, where he tutors composition alongside editing flyers on poetry and style. His poems and translations have appeared in journals on both sides of the Atlantic. He is the resident poet at EcoHealth, where his science-themed verse is regularly featured, and a senior copyeditor at Review of International American Studies. He also teaches at M√ľnchner Volkshochschule and leads the Amerikahaus Literaturkreis.

20150803

Sonnet

by Edwin Arlington Robinson

The master and the slave go hand in hand,
Though touch be lost. The poet is a slave,
And there be kings do sorrowfully crave
The joyance that a scullion may command.
But, ah, the sonnet-slave must understand       
The mission of his bondage, or the grave
May clasp his bones, or ever he shall save
The perfect word that is the poet’s wand.

The sonnet is a crown, whereof the rhymes
Are for Thought’s purest gold the jewel-stones;       
But shapes and echoes that are never done
Will haunt the workship, as regret sometimes
Will bring with human yearning to sad thrones
The crash of battles that are never won.

Note:  A recitation can be heard here.

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