Motherfuckers talking shit about American sonnets
I know what you want: to waggle your tongue
in the old ferment, the pure Elizabethan
product, hundred-proof, guaran-fucking-teed
to make you go buckwild, flushed, knock-kneed,
toe-curled, blank-eyed, blank-versed, brain all snow-white
till you spill your thin blancmange down your tidy-
whiteys and come—back to yourself. I get
it. Sometimes I'd also like to forget
that I'm no longer young. But the sonnet doesn't
belong to you. There's nothing to own. Not a spit
of land nor spitcurl of rivulet for your chickenwire,
your chickenshit sneers—where's the rhyme scheme?
Not Shakespeare. Not Keats, not Drayton, not Donne.
It's not your lawn. (Yawn.) Stop yelling. Be done.
Sam Cha (@antikythera) was born in Korea. He earned an MFA from UMass Boston. A winner of two Academy of American Poets prizes and a St. Botolph's Club Emerging Artists Grant, his work has appeared in apt, Anderbo, Better, Best New Poets, Boston Review, decomP, DIAGRAM, Memorious, Missouri Review, Rattle, RHINO, and Toad. A micro-chapbook, 5 Poems, is available from Damfino Press. He's a poetry editor at Radius. He lives and writes in Cambridge, MA.
>> Back to Issue 24, 2021-22