Sonnet I.


For Philip

Cicadas sing at midday, metal-bright
Murmur hymning indolence to earth,
While painted ladies dart in fevered flight,
Knowing of all most poignantly life’s worth.

Fond sunlight coaxes salt scent from marrow
Of warm-breasted marsh, and drows’d palms breeze-wake
With green rapier-rattle. An arrow
Pierces yet—Summer to her flight betakes.

A silver ribbon sparks athwart the blue
As homing cranes outdistance creeping cold—
The sight wrings cry from heart of mine, “I do
Not want death! I do not want to grow old!”

But, ah, my love, while you are you, and I
Am I, Love’s high summer shall never die.

13 Responses to “Sonnet I.”

  1. Corinne says:

    Oh My! Just beautiful! Thank you for sharing.

  2. Josh says:

    This. Is. Brilliant!

  3. Holly says:

    Beauty. And I love your last (stanza?) – you and Philip (did you know his name means “lover of horses”??? How awesome is that???) are such an inspiration and great couple.

  4. Christie says:

    Gorgeous. Thank you for sharing this.

  5. Esther says:

    Oh, my, land’s sakes alive! If this is your FIRST sonnet, what will Sonnet 100 be like? (And how does one type tears into the comments box?) Thank you!!

  6. This is absolutely gorgeous. It made me want to cry.


    You are at Hutchmoot and I am sad to miss you . Some of my friends are there BUT
    I did get to IAM Inhabit last weekend. NYC in the Fall. I am teaching sonnets of Shakespeare, Malcolm Guite and others to my high school students this year. ( One is at Hutchmoot) So may I use this with my students?


    I did ask my student who is there to give you a hug. So if Carly comes up to you, just open your arms. Thank you for your poem. Will let you know when we do it. Beowulf is on tap right now. Not exactly a love sonnet!! Hope your session was “sold out!” Wish I was a butterfly not a fly there today.

  9. Carina Lidström says:

    Så fint! En engelsk sonett får alltid en långt pregnantare avslutning än en italiensk!

    Allt gott,


  10. Josie Ray says:

    The pain, even amidst the peace, and yet…the eternal. The languor, the fear, the flight. The recurring theme of sharpness woven through the softness. The throwing oneself upon love in the overwhelming face of it all. So well-written, well-captured.

  11. Josie Ray says:


    On this mountain He will destroy the shroud that enfolds all peoples,
    the sheet that covers all nations;
    He will swallow up death forever.
    The Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from all faces;
    He will remove the disgrace of his people from all the earth.
    The Lord has spoken.

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