Background: There is a writers' blog I visit, According to Hoyt
. One of the things they do there (mostly for fun) is a weekly writing exercise called "Vignettes": given a one-word prompt, come up with a little sketch or scene; ideally in 50 words, but this is not a rule, merely an incentive to keep the sketch as compact as possible. I've been taking part for some time.One recent week my Muse (who must have been out on the town the night before) put it into my head to see if I could compose a sonnet using exactly fifty words (50 words / 14 lines = average of 3.6 words per line). The prompt was "woe"; two - three hour's effort resulted in the following Procrustean verse:
Heedest thou ambition's provocation
(Inflexible, relentless, merciless)?
Reckon on unparalleled success —
Or, despairing, self-defenestration.
Vignetteering versifier, fated
Preposterously to poeticize,
Laboriously striving, reifies
Variegated words, concatenated.
Madsome Muse maniacally taunting,
He (overstraining Reason's fragile tether)
Mortars polysyllables together,
Victorious vocabulary vaunting.
Woe! To this scribbling simian befel
Unmitigated, dogged doggerel.