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Re: For Whom The Bell Tolls

Posted by Victoria S Dennis on March 13, 2010 at 07:59

In Reply to: Re: For Whom The Bell Tolls posted by David FG on March 13, 2010 at 07:40:

: : : : : : Does anyone know who first put John Donne's "For Whom The Bell Tolls" into sonnet form?

: : : : : I can't imagine how you would put that paragraph from a sermon into sonnet form! Can you post a link to this? (VSD)

: : : : It is a poem - by John Donne.

: : : : Here:

: : : : No man is an island,
: : : : Entire of itself.
: : : : Each is a piece of the continent,
: : : : A part of the main.
: : : : If a clod be washed away by the sea,
: : : : Europe is the less.
: : : : As well as if a promontory were.
: : : : As well as if a manner of thine own
: : : : Or of thine friend's were.
: : : : Each man's death diminishes me,
: : : : For I am involved in mankind.
: : : : Therefore, send not to know
: : : : For whom the bell tolls,
: : : : It tolls for thee.

: : : : DFG

: : : [Breaking the text into irregular short lines with initial capitals doesn't make a poem of this excerpt from a prose sermon by the reverend Dr Donne. - B.]

: : Second Baceseras: this is NOT a poem! (VSD)

: What's a poem then? Surely we've got past the stage when we think only things with 'rumpty-tumpty' rhythm and that rhyme are poems, and anything else is not.

: I suppose one could argue that poetry is defined by the stuff that Pam Ayres writes, but it's not an argument that I find very convincing.

: DFG

But even less convincing is the notion that any piece of prose can be converted into poetry by hacking it into bits! (And hacking it very badly; to my mind it's horribly jerky as "free verse".)In any case the OP called it a "sonnet"; and a sonnet is a very strictly defined verse form to which the hacked-up passage bears no resemblance at all. (VSD)