Editor’s Note: In keeping with the theme of this week’s essay – found here – we’re publishing this sonnet that I wrote a number of years ago. Oddly, the form I followed is a combination of the Petrarchan (abba, cddc, etc) and the Shakespearean (concluding with a rhyming couplet). I don’t recall why I chose that form, but it seems to work. Anyway, here’s the sonnet:
“Is it perfume from a dress
that makes me so digress?”
– T.S. Eliot – The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
A million voices shrilly call my name
Pleading, beseeching for a piece of mind
And nothing more – a little of my time,
A tiny fraction of my harried brain.
But a million fractions may make up a whole,
Which may not simply be the sum of parts.
What good, I ask, are men with fragment hearts
Who haven’t got the unity of soul
That substratifies all strength? No, I
For one reject the voices; I for one
Embrace the silence. Never shall I run
From the One Voice that only satisfies.
We all are burning mystics called to be
To give, unfractured, all our minds to Thee.