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Why the Sonnet? [Marilyn Nelson]

Petrarch, Shakespeare, Meredith, Browning, Millay, McKay, Hacker, Hayes: What is it that keeps poets returning to this form? What is it about 14 lines of rhyming metrical verse that has kept the form alive, through thousands of variations, for something like 5 centuries? Participants should be prepared to write. If you have a rhyming dictionary, bring it along.