Thursday, August 18, 2011

Sonnet for a new semester

Some time back, I asked my lit survey students to define a sonnet on the final exam. One of them wrote -- this was her entire definition -- "Fourteen lines syllabus."

So I wrote a poem. Which I would now like to share.

Fourteen Lines Syllabus

Come to class – or not – but if you come, stay seated.
You with the iPhone, time to get offline!
The revolution, folks, will not be tweeted;
There are no phones in 1789.

Well, yes, you really have to buy the book,
And read, and think ... Why, yes, I am a nerd.
Hey, business major with the pissed-off look:
The Blessed J. H. Newman wants a word.

Exams, grades, course goals, papers, all that stuff:
Please read those sections over at your leisure.
“There will be time indeed, and time enough.”
For now? I’d have you take some time for pleasure.

Oh! Welcome, all, to English 202.
That’s it! Read Blake before we meet anew.


Unfortunately, I think this might be better than my actual syllabus.

7 comments:

Bardiac said...

It's pure genius!

heu mihi said...

I love it!

Sisyphus said...

That is awesome! And now I am inspired to think about what not to put in the teaching philosophy, or: how best to weird out the search committee.

Dame Eleanor Hull said...

Please hand this out to your class. In fact, hand it out, and have an assignment in which you ask them to write a syllabus-sonnet. Or a scolding-teacher sonnet. Or a final-exam sonnet!

Ink said...

Love it!

Dr. Virago said...

Love it!!!

Anthea said...

I love it! I hope that this student is continuing to write poetry!