Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE SONNET, by WILLIAM WORDSWORTH



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THE SONNET, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Scorn not the sonnet; critic, you have frowned
Last Line: Soul-animating strains, -- alas! Too few.
Variant Title(s): "scorn Not The Sonnet; Critic, You Have Frowned"";
Subject(s): Milton, John (1608-1674); Poetry & Poets; Sonnet (as Literary Form)


SCORN not the sonnet; critic, you have frowned,
Mindless of its just honors; with this key
Shakespeare unlocked his heart; the melody
Of this small lute gave ease to Petrarch's wound;
A thousand times this pipe did Tasso sound;
With it Camoens soothed an exile's grief;
The sonnet glittered a gay myrtle leaf
Amid the cypress with which Dante crowned
His visionary brow a glow-worm lamp,
It cheered mild Spenser, called from Faeryland
To struggle through dark ways; and when a damp
Fell round the path of Milton, in his hand
The thing became a trumpet; whence he blew
Soul-animating strains, -- alas! too few.




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