Billy Collins’s “Sonnet” commences with mapping out the structure of a classic sonnet to give foundation to the poem: “All we need is fourteen lines, well, thirteen now, / and after this next one just a dozen…” (1-2). He continues: “…to launch a little ship on love 's storm-tossed seas,…” (3). The speaker uses the alliteration “…launch…little…love’s…” (3) in this line to give the reader an example of what sonnets usually discuss. This early line brings about the theme of love. Alliteration highlights the frequency of how sonnets usually discuss love and/or the complications of love. By underpinning the poem from the beginning, Collins allows the speaker to speak directly to the reader so one has a mental picture of his poem’s structure: “…then only ten more left like rows of beans…” (4). In this line, the speaker tells the reader that there remains ten more lines left in this poem since he had already used four lines and compares the lines of the poem to beans to give the reader a mental picture of the poem’s format. Although Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 130” commences with diagramming the poem’s...
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...net’s supremacy all emanate from Collins’s “Sonnet.” Throughout the fourteen short lines of the poem, the speaker cuts down his time until he runs out of space and time, and has not written anything close to a structure-perfect sonnet while Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 130” has a bit more order. In essence, the speaker of “Sonnet 130” reminds the reader of all his mistress’ flaws, and adding on the fact that, either because of her errors or in spite of them, he loves her and finds her lovely. However, he continues by saying that he finds his lover as dear as any woman “…belied with false compare” (14) such as her eyes to the sun, her lips to coral, her cheeks to damasked roses, and so on. With this last line, one realizes that Shakespeare’s “Sonnet 130” has been a dictum on excessive praise on women by dishonestly associating them to remarkable phantasmagorias in nature.
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