Beware: This is not a sonnet


Gaeun Kim

The dazzling sun and puffy cloud
Sigh sadly upon the empty ground.
"Why are all souls not out and proud,
But staring at books, barred and bound?"

Days and nights the children had frolicked,
Along the rivers, along the lakes.
Joy was what life seemed to depict;
A simple tale without mistakes.

And now just gaze into their eyes
Where shadows wander, fear appears.
Screams of history, scientists' cries
Have shed them drops of deep blue tears.

Outside a skylark sings a song
But no one stands up and sings along.

First try of drawing an eye with my iPad! It took quite a long time...

About the poem

After learning in depth about the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, I wrote a poem that was inspired by Romanticism, which is one of the important themes in the novel. Why do cheerful children somehow lose their bright energy as they become teenagers? In the case of Korea, it might be because they spend too much time in academies. But to think about it in another way, it could be the effect of what the children learned as they grew up. It's represented by the word "schooled" in this poem, but it could be just about anything: teachers, novels, friends, random adults on the street, newspaper headlines and TV shows. Everything children experience through time irreversibly affect their innocence. In the end, they no longer respond to the song of a bird, or the desperate call of their young selves buried deep inside their knowing hearts.

...And about writing the poem

The poem was at first intended to be an English sonnet, but after finishing it I figured out that sonnets were actually supposed to have iambic pentameters, not iambic tetrameters. Plus, they shouldn't have extra margins between the stanzas. But I couldn't fix this thing all up and start again the long adventure of searching for rhyming words and polishing the whole work. After all, what's the problem when what I wrote sounds like a beautiful song and gives the reader a sense of my message?
Well, I hope it does.