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Old 06-13-2018, 01:06 PM
Julie Steiner's Avatar
Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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Susan, forgive me, but until your reply to Nigel forced me to take another look (while squinting really, really hard), I had honestly thought that the rhyme scheme of your translation was aaaa bcde fgfgg.

I have no problem with half-rhymes. In fact, that's where I went wrong in the first quatrain. My recognition of the (unintentional, it now seems) half-rhyme between "down" and "alone" in L1 and L2, seemingly reinforced by the half-rhyming "withdrawn" in L3, caused me to overlook the perfect rhyme between "down" in L1 and "crown" in L4. I therefore concluded that you were actually using an aaaa pattern there, rather than an abba pattern.

This apparent (to me) monorhyme in the first quatrain looked like a compensation for your apparent (to me) abandonment of rhyme altogether in the second quatrain.

The rhymes of the second quatrain were completely imperceptible to me, because they aren't even half-rhymes. Their final syllables share neither all the same vowel sounds (1/2) nor all of the consonants (1/2).

In the universe in which I live, "penetrate" does not noticeably rhyme with "unhurt" (sharing only 1/2 of the final consonants: 1/2 x 1/2 = 1/4) and "loins" does not noticeably rhyme with "ends" (sharing only 2/3 of the final consonants: 1/2 x 2/3 = 1/6 = 1/3).

Such tiny fractional rhymes (1/4, 1/3) are too slight for me to perceive while I am in the middle of experiencing the poem. I can recognize them in retrospect, after an explanation, but I'm not sensitive enough to discern any sonic kinship there while in the moment.

I suspect that this extremely subtle, oblique rhyming will be lost on many other readers, too.

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 06-13-2018 at 01:13 PM.
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Old 06-13-2018, 08:36 PM
Susan McLean Susan McLean is offline
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Julie, I hear much more similarity in the slant rhymes in my original S2 than you do, but that is mainly because I hear preceding consonants as part of the mix. In "-trate/hurt" the r sound and the t sound are both part of the final syllable and my ear hears both, just in "loins/ends" I am hearing both the n sound and the final s sound. In fact, I tend to pronounce "ends" more like "enz." However, your not hearing those similarities challenged me to see if I could come up with slant rhymes that a purist could accept. So I have rewritten the first two stanzas, and I await reactions from readers in terms of which version they prefer.

Susan
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Old 06-16-2018, 01:42 AM
Julie Steiner's Avatar
Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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Hey, Susan!

I like the new rhymes very much, particularly "inviolate."

I'm wondering about two aspects of the...er, well, I can't really call it a sestet, can I?...um, the final stanza.

The first thing I'm pondering is precisely what the "Once only" bit really means. If it means, as I suspect, "only for a moment" or "briefly," maybe it would be better to say that instead.

The second is the unnatural position of "as trivial" before the verb ("cast aside"), which I found distracting. If you think an enjambment would be less distracting than this strange syntax, you could move the "cast" of "cast aside" earlier, into an end-rhyme position, and then take advantage of the extra room to rework the sentence. If the current situation doesn't bother you, don't do anything, of course.
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Old 06-16-2018, 11:54 AM
Susan McLean Susan McLean is offline
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Julie, thanks for your suggestions. I have changed "once only" to "just one time," but I don't want to change it to "just briefly" because that would signal to the reader that it ended quickly. I want the outcome to be delayed until later. Also, "einmal" means "once," but not, I think, "briefly." I did move "as trivial" to the later position in the line. Either location is a bit awkward, but the current position is clearer.

Susan
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