Ignis Fatuus

2009 Sonnet-Off

The first annual Sonnet-Off is wrapping up; not all submissions are in, from the look of it, so expect to see more added very soon, but below are the sonnets received before the cutoff time.  I’m not going to be a stickler about when they’re received, but I am going to throw what we have open to voting now, and just add the rest as they are submitted (that’s assuming we get any more!).

To vote for your favourite, just name the sonnet of your choice in the comments section.  I have no real way of preventing people from voting more than once, so I guess this is the honour system … honestly, the whole thing is for fun, so I’m not particularly inclined to prevent multiple votes anyway.

Without further ado, the submissions.


A. Remove Your Bluetooth When You Kiss Me

Beneath its steely threads the city waits;
Invisibly the web through air connects;
And soundlessly each dumb device relates
The messages each dumb device rejects.
In every room a networked terminus
Brings sounds to every quickened networked ear.
A million memes a moment softly hiss
White noise that muffles sounds to make thoughts clear.
Our voices mingle and our words lose sense,
The sounds creating silence in reverse;
Our language falters where our tongues commence,
And where our tongues end, language is a curse.
But shed the language, noises, words, and sounds,
And what can be imparted knows no bounds.


B.  Chthoniclust

I found a lily bulb in rich black dirt
Inside my parents’ darkened basement shelf.
“A little bit of sunlight never hurt,”
I said, as I removed it, to myself.
I put it on an orphaned dinner plate
To balance on the radiator ledge.
I thought that all I had to do was wait
Until the bright green spear revealed its edge.
The stalk grew quickly and within a spell
The radiator’s warmth had made it grow,
But now the heat that made the tendril swell
When small has made it droop and wither so.
With all the heat it must endure, I think
My little flower badly needs a drink.


C.  Dear Jennifer

I shudder whereupon I start to think,
Of all the misery my lady feels,
In losing precious sleep and missing meals,
Of pouring out her soul to any shrink.

She yet is pining for that wretched fink,
The one to whom her love still humbly kneels,
Though long ago he cast her off for reals,
Now neither she nor I are in the pink.

Her not quite pretty voice recounts the pain,
Her not quite lovely eyes won’t look to me,
But I won’t cease until my plan is done.

I’ll keep pursuing her, though all in vain,
I’ll hold her yet, not just a magazine,
What torment lies in loving Aniston!


D. The Curse of Dr. Phil

When we, the youth are wretchedly spoiled
By Oprah philosophy, doctor Phil
That tells us to our own glory do toil
We must expect love that is nothing but ill

We detach from our lovers wants and needs
To seek the glory of self affirmation
Wretched in our vanity, our pride, our greed
We commit not adultery, but alienation

No not the TV show by Michael the Moore
But a sin even worse than herbal tea
thinking we’re special we turn into bores
Despite John Donne’s ruminations on the flea

So lost in our own vat of wallowing demands
We are damned to the pleasure of our solitary hand


E. Cool until chilled

Arriving late but not before the band
She orders from the bar and looks around.
The club is filled with people, drinks in hand.
Their chatting makes a dull yet soothing sound.

She slips into an empty seat within
And sips her rock-filled drink without expression.
She tastes the sour bitter fruit and gin
Attempting to avoid an indiscretion.

She glances up as he does too and so
Their gazes meet but neither lets eyes fall.
To act as though this were for shame would show
That either cared the other cared at all.

Stung with the pain of joy and heat and fear.
She looks away before he draws her near.


Category: The Archives


8 Responses

  1. Þiðrekr says:

    I vote for ‘A.’

  2. katie says:

    Vote for “B”

  3. Shawne says:


  4. Stacy says:


  5. Mysterio says: