Yesterday or the day before, I published a sonnet which was not a real sonnet, in the sense that it did not have a rhyme scheme at all, which sonnets have in one pattern or another. Tonight, I decided to try my hand at something I hadn’t had practice in for a long time, and do an English sonnet. Of course, though it’s “after Shakespeare” in the sense of being modelled on Shakespeare’s (while not nearly as perfect), it’s also after Shakespeare in the historic sense, which will have to account for its use of several contractions and a more various examination of money relations (in the extended metaphor using love as the tenor and finances as the vehicle), whereas Shakespeare’s extended metaphors were even “tighter” than this and stuck together better, for want of another way of putting it. But barring the chutzpah of calling it by the title I’ve given it, I hope you will be able to enjoy it.
A Sonnet After Shakespeare You say you love me not, yet I have love To pay your debt to me of equal sum Though you'll no debt acknowledge, and you prove In each account of holdings perforce dumb. I can't both creditor and debtor be, To this amount of love sworn to repay Except by love's froward accountancy That holds both my heart and my head in sway. For heart, be owed the gentle passion still, For head, do calculate the rueful cost. I must desist, and yet present the bill, By way of stating what's already lost. But let my books become two sets in one, And I'll cheat for you, though I won't have done. ©Victoria Leigh Bennett, 1/12/17
That’s all for tonight. Sleep well. Shadowoperator