Days 18 & 16 poem-a-day challenge

I created an even greater challenge to writing a curtal sonnet (suggested by Maureen at by also making it a war sonnet. It is still a draft, but I’m satisfied with it enough to post it here with my poem-a-day challenge poems. Because it has so absorbed my time, I am combining days 16 & 18 with this effort.

For those who don’t know, a curtal sonnet is a variation on the classic 14-line sonnet. The curtal sonnet form was developed by Gerard Manley Hopkins, and he used it for what is probably his most famous poem, “Pied Beauty.” A curtal sonnet has eleven lines, instead of the usual fourteen, and the last line is shorter than the ten that precede it.

The media image is the famous poster by Kathe Kollwitz “Never War Again.”


Famous poster by Käthe Kollwitz: Never War Again! (lithograph, 1924)

Never War Again

War no more: cruel, it murders, and destroys.

There is no good from war that bombs the child,

so why do those with power rule by force?

No more: war crushes every breath and joy.

Gone are cheese and bread that make lives worthwhile.

A mother’s words silenced without remorse.

And yet, I take biscuits from the oven.

As gentle rain turns grass and rosebush green,  

delights a cardinal red and vines grown wild.  

Inside my tiger cat sleeps fed and loved.

Never war again.   

            Jacquelyn Markham (4/18/2022)

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