Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

Canzionere 36 May 12, 2011

How’s your Italian?


S’io credesse per morte essere scarco
del pensiero amoroso che m’atterra,
colle mie mani avrei già posto in terra
queste mie membra noiose, et quello incarco;

ma perch’io temo che sarrebbe un varco
di pianto in pianto, et d’una in altra guerra,
di qua dal passo anchor che mi si serra
mezzo rimango, lasso, et mezzo il varco.

Tempo ben fôra omai d’avere spinto
l’ultimo stral la dispietata corda
ne l’altrui sangue già bagnato et tinto;

et io ne prego Amore, et quella sorda
che mi lassò de’ suoi color’ depinto,
et di chiamarmi a sé non le ricorda

Poor Petrarch.  In this sonnet he is wishing he could free himself from the obsession of his love, but he thinks that death would just put him into another war, from one grief to another.  He begs Love, who has painted him with color, but doesn’t remember to come when he calls her. .. 

Poor desperately obsessed Petrarch.  Of course, even death was not an escape.  He still suffered for another thirty years after Laure died.  It wasn’t until the last decade of his life that his writings suggest he was released and could focus on worship of God and not his muse.

I played with a multi-colour pencil crayon and my calligraphy pens to transcribe this sonnet today.  Here is the result:

Canzionere 36 da Petrarca

I think that when I  take the time to set this up for a good copy, with copy lines and borders, it will be quite effective.  I particularly like my Italian pseudonym Giovanna Uccello.  😉  it’s fun having an easily transliterated name… Jeanne Oiseau.  I mean, Shawn Bird.


Reclining Angels February 7, 2011

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 10:34 pm
Tags: , ,


Your warm breath blowing up against my back

can fill the night with peace and with gladness:

A deep abiding sense of happiness.

Your breath’s a metaphor that shows the fact

That nothing in the world is better than

Being held tightly by strong and loving arms

In an embrace that protects from all harm,

An embrace that assures, “I am your man.”

And when I curl into that firm embrace

And place my ice cold feet upon your shins

For that quick quivering gasp that makes me smile,

You pull me tight and tickle with your chin

A bristly kiss that shows there’s no denial.

I’m thankful for the gift of heavenly grace.



(All fixed- iambic pentameter with a solid Petrarchan rhyme scheme! 😉

Submitted as part of Jingle’s Poetry Monday potluck on Love, Romance, and Relationships:   Potluck visitors, please put a link to your potluck post within your comment.  Thanks!


Sonnet for Grace 2 July 24, 2010

Filed under: Grace Awakening,Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 9:01 pm
Tags: , , ,

Your eyes awaken tender dreams in me

That call across mere lifetimes to the past

Revealed as twinkling stars in skies so vast:

A universe that’s less than we can see.

Beyond the Earth the roof of Heaven glows;

Beneath the ground the molten rivers glide,

Yet in your love securely I abide.

Without you Hell is close, but Heaven knows

That love like ours parades across all time,

Encircling all who come within its arms.

No sorrow can hold long against a joy

entreating me to fill the world with rhyme.

We rise on love above all Earthly harm

For death has lost its power to destroy.




Persona of Ben writing about Grace again.  Poor guy. He’s got it bad.

(I really do need to work on proper sonnet structure that incorporates a volta.  You don’t  see one in this, do you?  No?  I didn’t, either.  Sigh.)


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