"Allegory of the Element Earth" by Leandro BassanoSeasonal Sonnets (Acrostic) by Mark A. Doherty The Society March 20, 2018 Acrostic, Beauty, Culture, Poetry 17 Comments Winter’s Nocturn When angles of the sun are shining low, Intuition tells us we must sleep. Nocturnal tracks appear now in the snow To mark the chilly vigil some must keep. Enlightened constellations rule the skies, Reminding us that distant worlds must be, So vast the universe, so short our eyes. Omniscience sets imagination free. Light festivals will keep us from the dark, So long the nights, so chilly and so cold. The landscape seems now barren and now stark In spite of seeds of summer that it holds. Cold winter’s night now turns the other way— Envisions six months hence the longest day. Springsong Sonnet Sublime are changes deep within the ground, Presenting tips of green through bulging earth, Releasing buds with flowers all around, Incensed air saturated with rebirth. Now reaching skyward buds adorn the trees, Great rushing sap will rise within each arm In time to burst alive with new green leaves Suffused with light, such iridescent charm. Come back all creatures who’ve been six months gone, Or hibernated long within cocoons, My garden anxiously awaits your song, In melodies of green, I’ll revel soon. Now spring’s first day has dawned its balanced sun, Go breathe and sing and laugh and stretch and run. Summerfull So much effulgence greets the wandering eyes, Unveiling life, which burgeons form the trees. Meandering with sounds and scents that rise Midway between the breaths of morning’s breeze. Each moment seems to stretch the endless day, Revolving to the ever-present sun, So does the solstice subtly slip away On golden stems where harvests now begun. Like magic floating on the fragrant air, Sublimity of ease beneath warm skies Takes all old struggles, all the wintry cares Into green fields, to let them free and fly. Come to the feast, it’s time to celebrate Each moment, from this dawn, to dusk so late. Autumnways As life moves westward to the seasons’ set, Unspoken forces ripen fruits and seeds Toward the harvest, while the sun is yet Up fully half fulfilling summer’s needs. My thoughts become more pensive and serene, Nighttime chills make sweaters feel secure— So warm the sunny days, so cool between Halfway to winter’s night it seems so near. And in the predawn chill Orion’s rise Returning to a differing view of space Verifies the move toward winter skies Evolving slowly into summer’s place. So subtly moving seasons bring the change To where the natural circles rearrange. Mark A. Doherty is a poet and essayist who has spent 30 years teaching high school English students, many of whom are IB/AP students. He recently earned an MA in Writing, Creative Nonfiction from Southern New Hampshire University. Views expressed by individual poets and writers on this website and by commenters do not represent the views of the entire Society. The comments section on regular posts is meant to be a place for civil and fruitful discussion. Pseudonyms are discouraged. The individual poet or writer featured in a post has the ability to remove any or all comments by emailing submissions@ classicalpoets.org with the details and under the subject title “Remove Comment.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window) 17 Responses Fr. Richard Libby March 20, 2018 Bravo! What an exceptional effort! These sonnets contain wonderful description, and the acrostics are a nice bonus! Congratulations, Mr. Doherty! Reply Joe Tessitore March 20, 2018 I could not agree more! Bravo!!! Well-done, Mr. Doherty! Reply Mark Doherty March 21, 2018 Thank you Joe, Sometimes the best way to teach students how to write is to demonstrate it to them. These sonnets are part of that result! MD Mark Doherty March 21, 2018 Thank you Richard. Sometimes the best way to teach students how to write is to demonstrate it to them. These sonnets are part of that result! MD Reply James A. Tweedie March 20, 2018 Sublimity of ease beneath warm skies Takes all old struggles, all the wintry cares Into green fields, to let them free and fly. “Sublimity of ease.” What an inspired phrase! What a beautiful set of sonnets. Thank you. Reply Mark Doherty March 22, 2018 Hi James, Thanks. I always thought that the word sublime should replace the word awesome. Glad you enjoyed the sonnets! Mark Reply Amy Foreman March 20, 2018 Really enjoyed each of these, Mr. Doherty, and especially loved the extra challenge you gave yourself to fit this form into a meaningful acrostic. Very nice! Reply Mark Doherty March 21, 2018 Amy, Thank you! Sometimes the best way to teach students how to write is to demonstrate it to them. These sonnets are part of that result! MD Reply David Paul Behrens March 20, 2018 Brilliant! Simply brilliant! Reply Mark Doherty March 21, 2018 David, Thank you! Sometimes the best way to teach students how to write is to demonstrate it to them. These sonnets are part of that result! MD Reply ben grinberg March 20, 2018 Reply Mark Doherty March 21, 2018 Hi Ben, Pretty cool interpretations here. I enjoyed this! I love acapella. I’m actually doing a Kate Wolf poem “The Lilac and the Apple” for my students as a starter activity tomorrow in class. Thanks for the music, and nice interpretation of syllables and meter. Reply Leo Yankevich March 21, 2018 You get a gold star for metre sans enjambments and substitutions. You are a veritable mantle clock, and perhaps the next Leonard Cohen. I’ve heard you sing! Reply Mark Doherty March 21, 2018 Thank you Leo for such positive words. I still have a ways to go to be like Leonard; he was a legend. I will be posting a bunch of recorded songs on YouTube when my new poetry chapbook comes out through unsolicited press this June. I’m curious, did you hear my two songs already on YouTube, or did you hear me years ago when I was playing and singing for a living? (now it seems like a lifetime ago, as my world is consumed by teaching high school English). Mark Reply Jeris March 21, 2018 Mark, these are great. Keep up the good work. You are a true man of the Earth… it makes me jealous. Reply Mark Doherty March 21, 2018 Thanks Jeris, We all bring our gifts to the table, don’t we! Mark Reply Damian Robin May 7, 2018 Hi Mark, thank yu for the wonderful poems. I hope you don’t mind me making the link to http://classicalpoets.org/a-poetry-puzzle-challenge/ where I have put this comment: Acrostics Based on Chinese Do Exist (well, sort of). “In Chinese language, there are no letters. Every single word/character stands alone and means something. So, putting every first word of each line of a poem together, they mean something else. Well, now let’s show everyone an example of Cang Tou Shi. “ See https://www.whitecloudpoetrysociety.org/blogs/2018/4/8/what-is-cang-tou-shi- Although acrostics of roman alphabets do not need to tag the first letter of a line, Chinese Cang Tou Shi do. As the translator Jennifer Zeng says in the blog linked above: “Cang” is the Chinese word for “to hide”, or “hidden”. “Tou” means at the beginning. “Shi” is the Chinese word for poetry and poem. Interesting possibilities. 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