Posted in Poetry

Dark Sonnet, My Undoing

The July Challenge given to us by qbit is a Dark Sonnet.  I must confess, I wrote one, felt a bit restless about it, so I wrote another one.  I am posting both.  The first one was easy for me; I am a lover of the blues and my mind went immediately to the Robert Johnson legend about meeting the devil at the crossroads to strike a deal.  I post this one somewhat relectantly since my good friend Nosaintaugustine went in the same direction.  Ah, well, great minds, and all that! Thanks for indulging me with 2 Dark Sonnet poems.

I.   Dark Sonnet Deal

The Devil rolls some teeth like dice,
Says your bones are for the gamble —
Wants to know your wager price,
And if the payout you can handle:

He’ll use your ribs for a picket gate,
Ligaments to string a violin’s regret,
Skin to stretch the truth from here to fate,
Pluck those strings to make you forget

 The crossroads that split your spleen from liver
Your memories dance dangle round his neck
Fret strings and chords, your fingers a quiver
Prove the veracity, take up his bet
Roll out the bottleneck, cavort with the blues
The Devil came away with naught but your shoes

II.   Dark Sonnet Dance

The Devil rolls some teeth like dice,
Says your bones are for the gamble —
Wants to know your wager price,
And if the payout you can handle:

He’ll use your ribs for a picket gate,
Ligaments to string a violin’s regret,
Skin to stretch the truth from here to fate,
Render you a cast-off marionette

A darker shade of flame will flavor your tears
With salt of your fortune; will you hazard to know
The madness you’ll gain from this dark puppeteer
The odds of his table, a dangerous throw

 
Sly your fist into his chest; pluck back your spleen
The overhead cost of this game is obscene

 

Collaborative Poetry / J Randall Brett / Jill Lyman

 

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Author:

A wild soul writing poetry & fiction while teaching high school literature, all with a camera in tow.

14 thoughts on “Dark Sonnet, My Undoing

  1. Fantastic!!!! They are both great, but I think I like the 2nd one best. And serious points for the regret/marionette rhyme. Holy cow. Love “sly your fist, pluck back your spleen”. Vibrant, edgy.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice! In the first, I love how you slipped crossroads in there and bottleneck and this line really got my imagination going: “Your memories dance dangle round his neck.” In the second I love the whole marionette, puppet thread and the slyly funny last line “the overhead cost of this game is obscene.”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Two dark sonnets…double the pleasure! These are both excellent. I love the crossroads line and ‘memories dance dangle round his neck” in the first one. It *feels* bluesy. And that second one…so much energy. The marionette/puppeteer lines, brilliant. “Sly your fist into his chest; pluck back your spleen.” Wow! I want to weep that’s so good!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Honored by your generous words. The dance dangle line was a case of not knowing which one to use, so I compromised and let them both stand and it gave it an unbalanced feeling that worked. The brilliance of qbit’s 1st half made this a fun write!

      Liked by 1 person

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