AC’s Shakespearian Sonnet Recipe

When I think of a sonnet I think of Mr W Shakespeare in his Elizabethan universe. My preferences may be biased by my English-ness. However, it is worth noting that the Shakespearian Sonnet is one of many forms and can trace it origins to Italia.(

A Shakespearian Sonnet can generally be thought of as an expression of a single complete thought written in 14 lines of iambic pentameter adhering to a set rhyme scheme.


– an idea

– a metaphor

– dedication to iambic pentameter (iamb being an unstressed syllable followed by a stressed syllable e.g today and pentameter meaning five feet or repeating the ‘iamb’ five times).

– a rhyme scheme of abab cdcd efef gg


1. Brainstorm ideas and metaphors

I wanted to write a poem for my mum and she reminds me of my brown bear.

2. In the first quatrain introduce main theme and metaphor:

Brown bear, you were there before I could walk

Before I could laugh, before I could dream;

Brown bear, you were there before I could talk

Before I could cry; before I could scream.

3. In the second quatrain; elaborate and provide examples:

My life story is intertwined with yours

we unearthed the world one step at a time

we climbed hills and walked across the moors

our corner of the world was so sublime.

4. The third quatrain represents the turning point or realisation:

Seasons have turned and I’ve grown like a tree

I’ve flown the nest; I work in the city;

But here you are… Still watching over me

just how nature intended it to be.

5. Summarise or conclude thoughts or as in this case expose the metaphor:

There is just one thing I would like to say;

thank you mother, for being there, always.

Give it a whirl and let me know how you go… 

To see the completed version of this sonnet in full please click here and more of my sonnets

Thanks for reading! What did you think?

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