An evaluation of my own poem, Snow

June 1, 2010
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The Sonnet:
The sky let out a shock of blinding light,
The wind whistled a tune of fatal fear,
Then clouds curled over as if it were night,
And silently squeezed out a little tear.
The tears then tumbled down to touch the ground,
All trees around did shuffle with great shock,
Each leaf did tear and twirl itself around,
To see an object fall toward a rock.
Something had fallen down from in the sky,
Knocked out by wind and rain from up above,
A beautiful white bird went down to lie,
So pure, so perfect was that little dove.
Then suddenly more birds began to flow,
Into a small, gleaming patchwork of snow.

In this evaluation, I will pick apart my sonnet, to see what I can do next time to improve it. I will try to find out the good and bad points of my work.

My poem is about a stormy day. At first, I was trying to conjure up a feeling when somebody reads it that makes them shiver, and feel sombre, but when I was writing it, it changed at the end. I started my poem with the words, “The sky let out a shock of blinding light, the wind whistled a tune of fatal fear,” which already gives the reader a sense that the poem will not be a happy one, but near the end the mood starts to change, when it says,

A beautiful white bird went down to lie,
So pure, so perfect was that little dove.
Then suddenly more birds began to flow,
Into a small, gleaming patchwork of snow.

I think that this completely changes the tone of the poem, because the words are light. When I read it I can see lighter colours, as opposed to the greys and dark greens of before. The words almost become more elegant, which is what I was trying to get across, because the white bird was a metaphor of snow, and snow is seen as elegant little flakes falling silently from the sky, so with the change of words came a change of tone. I was not sure if this metaphor of the doves as snow was very obvious. I was trying to make unclear the fact that the ‘white birds’ were actually snow, so I then tried to make the last line like a big secret that was let out, but I think it was too unclear, because people who read it asked me why I wrote a poem about birds dying!
I don’t think that I quite got the feeling that I started out wanting, because when I read it I don’t feel a huge amount of emotion, and I was really trying to make the poem feel darker than it did, but with the sudden change of emotion at the end, it made the whole thing lighter and. I like the way it changes, because it shows a bigger contrast between the two feelings. If I could rewrite the poem, I would just try to make the emphasis on the changes more obvious and like it was supposed to happen, and I would try to make the ending two lines more magical.

Fitting the syllables and rhyming together was a weakness for me, because to try and get good similes and metaphors in without cheesy rhyming was really difficult. I think that I managed to get each rhyming set decent, but it took a while, because whenever I had a good and descriptive sentence it always ended up too long to fit the 10 syllable lines. Obviously it would no longer be a sonnet, but if more than 10 syllables were allowed then I would definitely have been able to create that magical feeling that I wanted, but I was restricted by the rules of a sonnet.

Strength in the poem, I think is the Iambic Pentameter. There are barely any words that you have to get your tongue around to say, because most of the syllables have the correct emphasis on them. I think that this was easy, because I am very musical and the pentameter just seemed to fit into place and I didn’t need to work it out. The places where you do need to slightly put the wrong emphasis on the word are there because I found it so hard trying to get the right amount of words in. If I could rewrite the poem then I would go through the lines and swap some words around to make them fit well, for example in this line, “The wind whistled a tune of fatal fear”, the word ‘whistled’ has the wrong emphasis, so I would change it to something like, “The wind did whistle tunes of fatal fear”, which flows easily. That was the only place where it was really noticeable.

After analyzing this poem carefully, I think that my sonnet could have been really good, but to have made it better I needed more power and emotion in my phrases, using good similes and metaphors to create a deeper and more meaningful tone.

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