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Bake-off Begins Tomorrow

Dear Fellow Poets,

In choosing the finalists from the sixty-one sonnets submitted to me for this year’s bake-off, I relied on the wisdom of poets, the expertise of scholars and, of course, my own gut feelings, what I call the “goose-bump factor,” which may or may not be wise, but there it is.

My decision matrix was based on the following four main criteria (weights in brackets), all of which had sub-criteria as well:

(A) craft, sound, mechanics, images, mood (2)
(B) true to the spirit of the sonnet (3)
(C) universality/transcendence (2)
(D) goose-bumps (3)

Sonnet Bake-off: One week to go!

In one week, I'll be posting the first two bake-off sonnets, with Mr. Turner Cassity's comments and a few of my own.

In her Introduction to The Penguin Book of the Sonnet, Phillis Levin states that the sonnet is " . . . a mode of introspection, a crystallization of the process of thought, of a self arriving at self-consciousness.”

This seems to be borne out in this year's bake-off, as no less than 72% of the sonnets submitted were written in the first person, 82% of which were in the first person singular.

Bake-off Selections

I know my mind and I have made my choice;
Not from your temper does my doom depend;
-- Edna St. Vincent Millay (Fatal Interview, sonnet XLV)

Dear Poets,

The deadline for the sonnet bake-off submissions has now passed. I made no final decision until after 6 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, just in case we had some submissions from as far away as Hawaii, but no, the last one was received at around 3 p.m. EDT.

The Gladdest Thing

In Edna St. Vincent Millay's "Afternoon on a Hill," she writes, "I will be the gladdest thing/Under the sun!/I will touch a hundred flowers/And not pick one." That's how I feel about reading and reading the sonnets submitted to me for this year's bake-off, very glad indeed.

Just a reminder that tomorrow (March 10) noon is the submission deadline. That's when "I will mark which must be mine" and then send twelve to Mr. Cassity for his comments.
 

Cathy

 

An embarrassment of riches

"From A Very Little Sphinx"
-- Edna St. Vincent Millay

Come along in then, little girl!
Or else stay out!
But in the open door she stands,
And bites her lip and twists her hands,
And stares upon me, trouble-eyed;
'Mother,' she says, 'I can't decide!'

Dear Poets,

Sonnet Bake-off: One week to go

Into the golden vessel of great song
Let us pour all our passion; breast to breast
Let other lovers lie, in love and rest;
Not we, - articulate, so, but with the tongue
Of all the world . . .
Edna St. Vincent Millay

Sonnet Bake-off: Google Protection

In answer to a submitter's question on protection from Google, Alex has been kind enough to inform me:
As for protection from Google, there was no protection at all with the previous sonnet bake-offs. However, this time we will add a 'noindex' code as the first thing for each finalist sonnet post, instructing Google robots not to index the thread where it appears. If the discussion spans several pages, the first response of each subsequent page should be edited by a moderator to add that code as well.
 
 

Eratosphere Sonnet Bake-off

Google G-mail was down from 5:30 to around 8:30 a.m. EST this morning (Feb. 24).  If you sent me a sonnet during that time, you might want to re-submit, just in case.
 
Thank you.
 
Cathy

Sonnet Bake-off Blog

Bake-off Blog

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