The Great Sonnet

I set myself to write a sonnet.
I labored hard and long upon it.
Sweet verse some maid might shed a tear at,
More ere’s than one could shake a spear at.
I spoke of luv, both hers and his’s
With lots of thee’s and thou’s and tis’s.
“My Luv art like a red, red rose
From thynst red hair to thynst red toes.
Thy kisses art as soft as snowflakes,
As sweet as syrup poured on pancakes.
Thou art so much like smelly flowers
That just stand there and smell for hours.
Thou chirpest like the birds in spring…”
[Then I noticed I was already at the fourteenth line of my sonnet and had done screwed up the whole thing.]



Bob H. Cook is an inmate at the Federal Correctional Institution in Seagoville, TX.

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18 Responses

  1. Paul A. Freeman

    Well done, Bob. Humour is difficult to write, especially when Americans can’t spell the word correctly, but you’ve done a fine job.

    Just sort out that 14th line and I guarantee that ‘maid’ you speak of will be much impressed.

    Thanks for the read.

  2. James A. Tweedie

    Bob, lol and way to go. One of those rare poems I wish I had written myself!

  3. jd

    Enjoyed your poem, Bob. Tis very clever and sweet.
    Quite the intriguing Bio you have too.

  4. Paul Martin Freeman

    Bob, I think this is wonderful. It flows so freely with such wit and polish. It doesn’t take itself seriously and has some lovely tender lines like these:

    Thy kisses art as soft as snowflakes,
    As sweet as syrup poured on pancakes.

    There’s no point in saying I wish I’d written it as I know I couldn’t have done.

    Clearly, poetry knows neither walls nor bars.

  5. Roy Eugene Peterson

    Your sense of humor shines through under adverse circumstances. Well done.

  6. Margaret Coats

    Bob, you make remarkably refined use of very old fashioned plain speech with deliberate infelicities included. Great job with your Great Sonnet!

  7. Mary Gardner

    Bob, I enjoy the narrator’s pretentious aspiration in using old forms (albeit ungrammatically) up to the fourteenth line, where “done” thuds it back down to Earth for a laugh. Applause for “than one could shake a spear at,” also.

  8. Joshua C. Frank

    I like it! It’s a great parody of all those love sonnets’ overused clichés that give poets a bad name.

  9. Cynthia Erlandson

    I agree with all of the comments above, Bob; I was smiling largely all the way through — and especially at the end! I truly hope you’ll send us more poems.

  10. Mark Stellinga

    Bob – you can’t go wrong with ‘humor’ (the way Americans like Evan and I spell it!)…thanks for the chuckle.

  11. The Society

    Bob H. Cook submitted this poem through old-fashioned mail and says he does not have computer access. I thank you all on his behalf and I know that he will be thrilled. I will pass on your comments to him.

    -Evan Mantyk
    SCP Editor

  12. Jeff Eardley

    Bob, this is so brilliant. I can only thank you so much for making us laugh today ( Over here in England, there’s not much to laugh about)
    I hope the future holds good things for you. This is a great start. Well done.

  13. Geoffrey Smagacz

    I don’t know what you did to get yourself incarcerated, but this is a fine way to redeem yourself. You must be on the right track because you’re doing it with a sense of humor.


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