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Explore the Craft of Writing Poetry
The Sonnet
Sonnet Comparison Chart
English Verse

The Keatsean Sonnet is a sonnet form patterned after John Keats' poem On the Sonnet. It is interesting that in researching I found Keats wrote several sonnets, mostly in the Petrarchan or Shakespearean form. But this one sonnet, the frame of which he himself did not duplicate, sparked imitation and a sonnet form named for him. Primarily written in tercets with its own unique rhyme scheme and irregular meter, Keats demonstrates that a stanza is not set apart by rhyme scheme nor metric pattern but by a thought. He includes all of the components of a classic sonnet but he deliberately scrambles them.

An Ode and a Sonnet are named for him. Clearly, if you had not already noticed, John Keats (1795-1821) is an influential poet.

The elements of the Keatsean sonnet are:

  1. lyrical
  2. a quatorzain, 14 lines, made up of 4 tercets followed by an unrhymed couplet.
  3. metric patterns at the discretion of the poet. One source suggests there should be no meter and the form is like free verse. I disagree, the poem is metric, the pattern however is irregular.
  4. rhymed, rhyme scheme abc abd cab cde de.
  5. composed with pivot late into the sonnet, between the last tercet and the couplet.

    On the Sonnet by John Keats
    If by dull rhymes our English must be chain’d,
    And, like Andromeda, the Sonnet sweet
    Fetter’d, in spite of pained loveliness;
    Let us find out, if we must be constrain’d,
    Sandals more interwoven and complete
    To fit the naked foot of poesy;
    Let us inspect the lyre, and weigh the stress
    Of every chord, and see what may be gain’d
    By ear industrious, and attention meet:
    Misers of sound and syllable, no less
    Than Midas of his coinage, let us be
    Jealous of dead leaves in the bay wreath crown;
    So, if we may not let the Muse be free,
    She will be bound with garlands of her own.

Reasonnet Sonnet is an invented sonnet form by Ruth Poteet at Allpoetry which tweaks the rhyme scheme of the Keatsean Sonnet. The rhyme scheme is aaa bbb ccc ddd ee. All other elements remain the same.

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

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